Karachi reptile show huge draw

January 14, 2013 - 12:00:00 am

KARACHI: A reptile show has opened at the Karachi Zoological Gardens attracting over the weekend a large number of visitors.

The event generated a lot of excitement among visitors who got an opportunity to have a closer look at and even touch reptiles. There were a few enthusiasts who let a python wrap itself around their necks.

“It’s the first time in my life that I have touched a python and a snake. Earlier, I had only watched them on TV,” said a teenage girl visiting the show along with her family.

The species were: three Indian rock pythons (two nine- to 12-foot-long while another sub-adult), 10 to 12 snakes (both poisonous and non-poisonous) species, an albino Burmese python, two baby marsh crocodiles and a desert lizard.

The snake species included sand boa, cobra, corn snake, rat snake, common krait, yellow cobra and Russell Viper. However, much to visitors’ surprise, none of them was tagged.

“It seems that the show has been organised in a hurry. The display boxes covered with cardboards are not safe as snakes can easily escape,” said a visitor. Junaid Jimmy, from a non-governmental organisation, said that he  was involved in reptile conservation, said that he kept around 300 snake species, largely local species, and a few pythons at his farm outside the city.

“We don’t sell reptiles. We conserve indigenous species and breed them. That’s why most of our exhibits are those we caught after they got injured in traffic on highways,” he said, claiming that no one except himself in the country had a yellow cobra imported from Iran. Internews