A seasoned snake catcher was left gobsmacked after responding to a call where a panicked woman had vacuumed a venomous snake.
Drew Godfrey, who runs Hervey Bay Snake Catchers in Queensland, received a call from a couple at a holiday resort in the area on Tuesday.
‘Just when you think you’ve seen it all in this job, someone calls you and says their wife has sucked a snake up with the vacuum cleaner!’, he wrote on Facebook.
The snake catcher uploaded a video of himself rescuing the snake from the vacuum.
‘This is a bit different,’ he says as he tentatively checks the vacuum hose before removing the bag and tearing it open.
‘It’s a yellow-faced whipsnake.’
‘Poor little guy, I bet that sucked for you. I’m just glad it’s okay – I was afraid we were going to turn up to a dead snake.’
He adds: ‘I was tempted to pick him up and hold him but he might nip, especially after that ordeal.’
Mr Godfrey then packed the snake into a plastic box marked ‘danger: venomous snakes’ before releasing him into the wild.
The snake was a newborn hatchling yellow-faced whip snake, a slender, fast-moving species that is common throughout Australia.
The species, which are often confused for the extremely venous eastern brown snake, can grow to roughly a metre in length.
They are venomous but not considered particularly harmful to humans.
‘I’ve been envenomated three times by these snakes,’ Godfrey told Newsweek. ‘It’s like a bee sting.’
Mr Godfrey told the couple the snake was a protected species and that it would be ‘cruel and illegal’ to leave it in there.