The media is fired up about a video showing a 12-foot-long, parched King Cobra drinking water from a water bottle. The video first uploaded by a YouTube channel called ‘Uttara Kannada News’ shows a man in khaki giving water to the snake.
Mashable India, was one of the first to put the video out and said that severe drought prevailing across Karnataka had resulted in the cobra straying into a village and desperately looking for water.
Huffington Post, in its article, Thirsty King Cobra sips water from a bottle amid debilitating drought, draws much sympathy for the poor lost snake, being offered drinking water by a sympathetic man.
One of the men seen in the video giving water to the snake is CN Naykka, the Deputy Range Forest Officer of Karwar forest range. He had rescued the cobra along with snake expert Raghavendra
Though Naykka is surprised that the video has gone viral, he refuted claims of drought in the region and also said that such instances were common during summer months.
“The Kaiga Power Plant is located near the forest range. The snake had wandered into the Kaiga Township, located near the plant sometime in the morning. We spotted the King Cobra at around 12:30 pm and it was dehydrated due to the extreme heat. Hence, I offered it some water and took it to a rescue centre,” Naykka said.
The forest officer also said that this is the mating season and cobras wandering around the area was a common occurrence, which happens almost every year.
“Whenever a snake wanders into civilian-populated areas, we first offer it water. There is nothing sensational about it. The Kali River, which runs through the Karwar Forest Range is flush with water and so are the backwaters located near the Kaiga Power Plant. During summer, many different birds and animals come for water including cobras,” Naykka added.