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Peruvian Anaconda
Wading Creeks
Sighting and Killing the Snake
Pulling the Snake Out
Getting the Skin Out
In Print and a New Home

Sighting and Killing the Snake

That particular day in 1958 Dr. Kummel and I split our forces and surveyed in different directions.  I always had one or more men ahead of me and the rest wading behind.  As I climbed over a log jam which had been caused by a recent flood, I noted a strange coloration on one of the "tree trunks" beneath me.  From that I knew that I was right over a constrictor.

Luck came into the picture at this point.  At that moment the head man of the Peruvian field crew joined us.  He had been hunting monkeys for the men's dinner and had with him our only weapon, a single barrel hammer shotgun.  The line of men in the water behind me did not know the difficulty that I was in.  For them, the jam was too dense to see the snake.  I saw the snake's head which was less than a yard from my right foot.  The shotgun was loaded.  I asked for it, put the muzzle near the snake's head and fired.  The log jam erupted due to a tremendous convulsion of the snake and I was thrown back into the water.  The men behind me were astonished.  Oddly the lead rodman had picked his way over the log jam ahead of me without seeing the huge anaconda.  He was waiting upstream with a surveyor's rod for me to sight and plot his position.


© 2004, Samuel T. Pees
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