Manjunath S Nayak:
In a rare and challenging surgery, a Trinket Snake was operated upon for a tumour between its head and eye. Trinket snakes which are non-venomous and a constrictor species, is found throughout the Peninsular India.
Recently, Somashekar Channashetty, an animal lover and wildlife activist, rescued this snake from a household in Dharwad area of Karnataka. After noticing a tumour like swelling, he brought the reptile to the Veterinary Hospital of University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad for treatment. According to Channashetty, he rescued the Trinket Snake inside a house where it had taken shelter.
After examining the bump on its head, Dr Anil Kumara Patil, a senior veterinary doctor decided to remove the tumour through surgery. He successfully conducted the surgery for removal of this tumour in more than one and a half hours.
Dr Patil explained that snakes were very sensitive beings. “It is challenging to administer treatment to them. This snake had developed a tumour between its head and eye.”
The Trinket Snake has prominent eyes in its head with round pupils and often a black streak near its eyes.
Dr Patil adds, “This was a risky operation, and conducting it was a challenge as the brain and eye are very close. I have asked Somashekar Channashetty to keep the snake with him and nurse it. The snake needs care for another two days. It will be kept under observation to see if the tumour will grow again.”
A diurnal snake, Trinket Snake is highly active and constricts its prey (like rats and birds) to kill. Slender and medium sized, they have smooth and glossy scales. The anterior half of its body has crossbands with white and black boxes on a chocolate brown background while the posterior half of the body is brown with two black stripes which runs till the tail.