Farm Worker Defends Himself by Fighting Python in a Tree

This entry was posted by Rob on Saturday, 18 April, 2009 at

Talk about a rough day at work…

Ben Nyaumbe, a Kenyan farm worker in the Malindi area of Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast went to work like any other day last Saturday.

“I stepped on a spongy thing on the ground and suddenly my leg was entangled with the body of a huge python,” Nyaumbe says.

The 13-foot python then dragged the victim up into a tree and attempted to swallow him whole. Luckily, Nyaumbe was able to use his t-shirt to smother the snake’s head and prevent it from eating him. At one point the man even bit down on the snake’s tail to attempt to break free.

After nearly three hours of struggling, the python momentarily eased its grip and Nyaumbe was able to reach his cell phone from his pocket and make a desperate phone call. Can you hear me now?

His employer received the call, and quickly arrived with police and villagers. They tied a rope around the python and pulled them both out of the tree and freed the man. “We both came down, landing with a thud,” said Nyaumbe.

Peter Katam, superintendent of police in Malindi district reported: “Two officers on patrol were called and they found this man was struggling with a snake on a tree.”

“The snake had coiled his hands and was trying to swallow him but he struggled very hard. The officers and villagers managed to rescue him and he was freed.”

“He himself was injured on the lower lip of the mouth – it was bleeding a little bit – as the tip of the snake’s tail was sharp when he said he bit it.”

The police officers took the snake to a sanctuary in Malindi town but it ended up escaping during the night, probably from a gap under the door in the room where it was being kept.

“If it wasn’t for the villagers and officers who helped him, he would have [eventually] been swallowed by the snake over the Easter holiday,” says Katam. “It’s very mysterious, this ability to lift the man onto the tree. I’ve never heard of this before.”

Nyaumbe told reporters about how he was forced to resort to desperate measures while fighting the python, which had apparently been hunting livestock before he stepped on it. “I had to bite it as I struggled, one hand incapacitated.”

Police officers originally considered shooting the snake, but were unable to fearing injury to Nyaumbe. Once the victim and snake were pulled from the branches and separated, the snake was tied up and bagged.

“We are still seriously looking for the snake,” said Police superintendent Katam. “We want to arrest the snake because any one of us could fall a victim.”

Arrest the snake?

“Excuse me Mr. Python, You are under arrest. You have the right to remain silent and anything you hiss may be used against you in a court of law.”

So again we had the perfect situation to test out a stun gun on a python, but again this guy was unprepared. If only he had a cell phone stun gun on him, he could have laid some juice into the snake and see how it liked the voltage.

Don’t they at least carry machetes out there? Perhaps Ben should consider something other than a mere mobile phone…

Better luck next time.

Be Safe, Be prepared, Don’t step on snakes.

Past Python Blog entries:
Bah, It’s only a 16 foot Python. No Worries Mate on June 17, 2008

Beware: Attack Python on Duty on Feb. 28, 2008

More Runaway Amphibians on Feb.03, 2009

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2 Responses to “Farm Worker Defends Himself by Fighting Python in a Tree”

  1. My eyebrows are raised… a 13 foot python is not very big, when you consider the size a of an adult male. Don’t get me wrong — huge scary to look at — but I just don’t see how it could try to eat a full grown man. Maybe it is just a lot bigger than what I’m envisioning in my mind?

  2. Rob

    Can you imagine the phone call?

    Worker: “Boss, Help, I’m being attacked by a python!”

    Boss: “You are being what?”

    Worker: “A python grabbed me and pulled me up a tree, I’ve been fighting with it for 3 hours!”

    Boss: “Yeah, Right. You better not have been goofing off for 3 hours! I’ll dock your pay! Get back to work!”

    Worker: “No really, this snake is huge! Help meeeee!”

    Boss: “Yeah, ok, I’ll be right there… If this is a joke…”

    Worker: “Ahhhhhhh!”

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