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Forest guards ordered to watch over python that swallowed deer

Forest officials, who witnessed the python grab its 3.5 feet prey near Gandak river in Udaipur forest range of Valmiki Tiger Reserve in Bihar, said the minor reptile slipped into semi-conscious state after swallowing the adult deer.

india Updated: Mar 31, 2017 19:54 IST
Sagar Suraj
Sagar Suraj
Hindustan Times, Bettiah (Bihar)
Python,Deer,Valmiki Tiger Reserve
The python, which has gone into a semi-conscious state after swallowing the deer, will take at least two weeks to digest it. (HT photo)

Don’t bite off more than you can chew, goes the old saying.

A python at the Valmik Tiger Reserve in Bihar apparently did not heed this piece of wisdom -- and instead swallowed an adult deer in full. But the prey was a trifle too big for the python.

Forest officials at the famous safari in West Champaran district said the three-metre-long Burmese python went into a semi-consious state after swallowing its prey.

The python would regain full consciousness and will be able to slither again only after it digests the deer, said Hemkant Ray, the divisional forest officer (DFO). But the digestion process is expected to take about two weeks, he added.

Till then, he has ordered guards to protect the python from possible attempts to kill it by poachers and also from other predators.

Forest officials were witness to the python grabbing the 3.5 feet tall prey near the Gandak river in Udaipur range of VTR on Thursday.

Ray said the Burmese python is one of the five largest species of snake.

“Burmese pythons are found near water bodies, are sometimes semi-aquatic and also found in trees. The average length of an individual python is 3.7 metres (12.1 feet), but are known to reach 5.74 metres (18.8 feet),” he said.


First Published: Mar 31, 2017 19:11 IST