A 2-year-old bit a snake to death in Turkey last week after she was struck first.
Newsweekreports the toddler was in her backyard on Aug. 10 when neighbors heard her screaming. They found the child with a 20-inch snake clenched between her teeth. After a bite mark was found on the girl’s lip, she was rushed to a nearby hospital for treatment and observation.
“Our neighbors have told me that the snake was in the hand of my child, she was playing with it and then it bit her,” said Mehmet Ercan, the toddler’s father. “Then she has bitten the snake back as a reaction.” Ercan was away at work when the incident occurred.
The type of the snake is currently unknown, but as of this writing, the toddler appears to be doing well. There was some concern since 12 of the 45 species found in Turkey are considered venomous.
Dr. Drew Ricketts, assistant professor and extension wildlife management specialist at Kansas State University, tells WIBW that more than half of the instances where someone gets bitten by a venomous snake occur when the person tries to engage with the reptile.
“Most of our snake species, unless you surprise them or step really close to a snake, they are not going to strike at you most of the time,” Ricketts said. “If you are not fooling with the snake they typically are not going to strike at us.” He added that the best approach when encountering a snake is to go a different direction and leave the animal alone.