Huge snake found in lake near Düsseldorf | News | DW | 24.08.2018
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Huge snake found in lake near Düsseldorf

Access to a popular lake near the German city of Düsseldorf has been restricted due to an unwelcome guest — a yellow anaconda. While the snake is non-venomous, it does use strangulation to kill its prey.

Authorities have closed a recreation area in the northwestern German city of Meerbusch after a 2.5-meter snake was spotted taking a dip in a popular lake.

The reptile was first spotted in Lake Latum by surprised anglers who alerted the local authorities. Experts then identified the snake as a yellow anaconda.

Read more: The Burmese python and the fight for the Florida Everglades

The snake is non-venomous but it uses strangulation to kill its prey, meaning it could pose a risk to small animals such as cats and rabbits.

If the snake is spotted again at the lake, local authorities want to call reptile specialists from Düsseldorf's fire department to the scene.

The lake where a yellow anaconda was found in Meerbusch (picture-alliance/dpa/M. Becker)

Lake Latum, near Meerbusch, is not a swimming lake but is popular with hikers

Native to South America

Sunny weather could prove useful in the search for the snake because the reptile likes to sunbathe.

"You will probably only be able to find them when it warms up on the banks or on a log," reptile expert Sebastian Schreiner told the Rheinische Post news site.

"Anacondas are cold-blooded animals. If they get too cold, they'll come out of their hiding places; most of them lie down in the morning or somewhere in the sun," Schreiner said.

Native to South America, the yellow anaconda is a boa species and one of the largest snakes in the world.

It's unclear how the snake came to be in the lake, but one theory is that someone put it in the water.

law/cmk (AFP, dpa)

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