Moment three ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍᴏᴜs cobras tangle themselves around a tree after being released into the wild in India

This is the ᴜɴᴜsᴜᴀʟ moment three ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍᴏᴜs king cobras tangled themselves around a tree after being released into the wild in India.

Guide Nilesh Wankhede, 32, captured the footage as the snakes climbed a tree in Melghat Tiger Reserve in western Maharashtra state.

On Wednesday, Nilesh ʀᴇsᴄᴜᴇᴅ three snakes from three different places in Harisal village adjoining the reserve to the sanctuary. He shared that he has ʀᴇsᴄᴜᴇᴅ hundreds of snakes over the past 20 years but has never seen a sight like that. The sight of “three king cobras wrapped around a tree trunk” created many surprises for him.

He explained: “I had ʀᴇsᴄᴜᴇᴅ them from the village after they were spotted in a range of places, one was captured from the range office. The other was at a cow shed and the third one was hiding in a hut. After ʀᴇsᴄᴜɪɴɢ them, along with a friend I took them to the jungle to release them in the wild. The moment I released them from the bag, the three quickly moved and climbed a tree.”

Three king cobras coiled around a tree trunk and hissed, flaring out their iconic hoods while rescuers stood around watching.

“It was a fascinating sight as they did not run to the grass or burrows. They were hanging on the tree for good 15 minutes.”

Nilesh said: “I feel fortunate to have seen this unique moment. The snakes are highly ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍᴏᴜs and there could have been an ᴀᴄᴄɪᴅᴇɴᴛ but they did not ᴀᴛᴛᴀᴄᴋ us.”

The strange photos of the king cobras were posted on a Facebook group named Indian Wildlife. The post was captioned “Magical Melghat, spotted 3 cobras in Harisal forest!” and has been liked more than 5,600 times.

The king cobra is a ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍᴏᴜs snake species of elapids endemic to jungles in Southern and Southeast Asia.The king cobra is the world’s longest ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍᴏᴜs snake, with an average length of 3.18 to 4 m (10.4 to 13.1 ft), reaching a maximum of 5.85 m (19.2 ft).

Like most cobras and mambas, the king cobra’s ᴛʜʀᴇᴀᴛ display includes spreading its neck-flap, raising its head upright, puffing, and hissing. Despite its ꜰᴇᴀʀsᴏᴍᴇ reputation, the king cobra avoids ᴄᴏɴꜰʀᴏɴᴛᴀᴛɪᴏɴ with humans whenever possible. When ᴘʀᴏᴠᴏᴋᴇᴅ, however, it is capable of sᴛʀɪᴋɪɴɢ a ᴛᴀʀɢᴇᴛ at long range and well above the ground. Rather than ʙɪᴛɪɴɢ and retreating, it may sustain its ʙɪᴛᴇ and inject a large quantity of ᴠᴇɴᴏᴍ, which is a medical ᴇᴍᴇʀɢᴇɴᴄʏ.

Regarded as the national reptile of India, this species has an eminent position in mythology and folk traditions of India, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. Tʜʀᴇᴀᴛᴇɴᴇᴅ by habitat ᴅᴇsᴛʀᴜᴄᴛɪᴏɴ, the king cobra has been listed as Vᴜʟɴᴇʀᴀʙʟᴇ on the IUCN Red List since 2010.

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