A female Animal Concerns Research & Education Society (Acres) officer, Carmen Choong, and a volunteer, Rebecca, have earned widespread praise for their bravery after videos of them extricating pythons from a drain and a construction site have gone viral.
The drain incident occurred at Jurong while another python was wrested from under a concrete slab at a worksite in Bukit Batok. Both rescues occurred on the same day and both large snakes were estimated to be between 2-3 metres long.
Good job by two brave, young ladies Tough and risky work done with skill and compassion My sincere kudos! Proud of them
Acres’ deputy chief executive officer, Kalai Vanan told reporters that the drain python, which had a visibly engorged midsection, appeared to have swallowed a cat:
“The snakes in both cases are our native reticulated pythons. The python from the drain had eaten something. We can only conclude from X-rays but typically, the animal should be a cat.”
Adding that pythons should ideally not be removed from their natural habitat of drains and canals, Kalai said that the python from the drain had to be removed in this case as the drain was being cleaned: “We had to remove the snake for the safety of the reptile and respective staff who were cleaning the drains.”
Since the videos have gone viral, with over 50,000 collective views, several netizens have praised the female rescuers as “brave” and for their “amazing skills.”
When interviewed by local reporters, Choong – a 24-year-old Business and Environmental Science graduate – revealed that she took a full-time job with Acres after volunteering, as she wanted to work with wildlife. She added that she handles snakes once or twice a day:
“Most people will be afraid but for me I like snakes and have liked them since I was young.
“Most people are just amazed there are snakes in Singapore.”
The zoo took in both snakes to be microchipped before release back into the wild.
Pythons are spotted all around Singapore fairly regularly. Check out some sightings of pythons in common areas earlier this year: