It is definitely the stuff of villains. Even when the top end result is not demise, the assaults typically make worldwide headlines.
However scientists and snake lovers say the strikes could also be extra than simply alarming tales about reptilian foes. They will be the oblique results of our international meals chain’s insatiable want for a cheap product.
The newest snake assault sufferer was Robert Nababan, based on Metro.co.uk. On September 30, he was driving his moped house from his safety job at an oil palm tree farm in Indonesia when he got here throughout a big python mendacity throughout the street – and tried to maneuver it.
Accounts diverge from there. Some say he was merely making an attempt to clear the street; others say he was making an attempt to seize the snake.
What occurred subsequent isn’t in dispute: The python latched onto his arm and commenced to coil, the studies say. Sooner or later, it additionally bit his head. He was capable of dislodge the animal, probably with a machete, however not earlier than he was critically injured.
He was rushed to a hospital the place docs handled him. His snake assault story rocketed across the globe.
He survived, in contrast to a python assault sufferer in Indonesia earlier this yr. Villagers on the island of Sulawesi went looking for a person who by no means returned from a palm oil fruit harvest in March. As an alternative, they discovered scattered items of fruit, a choosing software, a boot and a 23-foot-lengthy python, swollen from a current meal.
Once they sliced the snake open, they discovered the lacking man, lifeless and coated in reptilian digestive juices.
The assaults are extra than simply the results of unsuspecting individuals who stumbled upon slithering snakes. And the causes might not directly stretch all the best way throughout the globe, to a grocery retailer close to you stocked with shampoo or ice cream or chocolate, or another product made with palm oil.
By some estimates, half of all issues present in grocery shops are made with the fruit of the palm oil plant, a flexible and low cost ingredient that occurs to develop greatest in areas of the world the place reticulated pythons thrive.
As a result of producing palm oil is so profitable, plantations have razed big swaths of rain forest to make room for the money crop.
It is sparking an environmental disaster in Indonesia, an aggregation of hundreds of islands that incorporates the third-largest chunk of the world’s rain forests, behind Brazil and Congo.
A lot of the world’s palm oil is harvested from two nations, Malaysia and Indonesia, with devastating results.
By 2012, the quantity of deforestation in Indonesia was estimated to…