A north Queensland snake catcher says seeing a green tree frog devour a highly venomous snake was a “once-in-a-lifetime experience”.
Jamie Chapel was called out to a Townsville property on Tuesday night to catch the coastal taipan, considered one of Australia’s deadliest species.
He was halfway there when the client told him a frog was eating the snake.
When he arrived at the property, the “quite large” frog had eaten all but the head of the 20-25cm taipan.
“I had the intention to save the snake, but it was too late,” Chapel, of Townsville Snake Take Away and Chapel Pest Control, told 7NEWS.com.au.
“The frog was already it eating and wasn’t going to let it go.”
Chapel realised the job wasn’t over after seeing the snake had bitten the frog.
“I was concerned the frog was going to die and regurgitate the snake,” he said.
“The snake was still alive in the frog.
“If it had of regurgitated it, the lady (client) would have had a live taipan on her property.
“But he didn’t do that at all. He kept that snake down.”
Chapel is nursing the frog back to health at his home.
If it survives, he plans to release it in a couple of days.
“Today, he’s a bit off colour but still good,” he said.
“I’m not sure how the snake’s venom affects the frog’s body.
“It could be a waiting game. ‘The frog was already it eating and wasn’t going to let it go.’
“He might go downhill tonight or tomorrow.” He said despite frogs eating “anything they can put in their mouths”, seeing one devour such a dangerous snake was rare.
“This could be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me,” Chapel said.
“It was an awesome privilege to see it happen.”
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