New Yorkers, if you see a giant poisonous snake slithering its way around the streets of The Bronx, you might want to let someone know.
Staff members noticed the snake’s absence during the day on Saturday and promptly closed the the whole World of Reptiles section of the zoo. Large signs greeted visitors saying that the exhibit was closed because of the escaped snake.
The director of the zoo said he was confident that the snake was still in the reptile house and that it was likely to avoid large open spaces.
“To understand the situation, you have to understand snakes,” Jim Breheny, the director, said in a written statement to the New York Times. “Upon leaving its enclosure, the snake would feel vulnerable and seek out a place to hide and feel safe. When the snake gets hungry or thirsty, it will start to move around the building. Once that happens, it will be our best opportunity to recover it.”
Egyptian cobras are the well-known breed famously seen in films coming out of snake charmer’s baskets. The snakes are very poisonous, and a bite from one can result in death if left untreated. They typically prey on birds and toads but have been known to bite humans if they feel threatened.
Of course, snakes are cold-blooded, so even if it did make it out onto the New York streets it probably wouldn’t get very far. Still, like the subway ads, if you see something, say something.