King cobra sighted in Naga City, Cebu
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Another king cobra, locally known as “banakon,” was sighted in Sitio Guindulman, Barangay Patag in Naga City in southern Cebu.
In a Facebook post on Saturday, February 10, a local resident shared an image of a deceased cobra, seeking assistance from the public in identifying the snake sighted in their area, to which the majority of those who responded answered that it was a king cobra.
According to Jerry Alinsonorin, it was around 10 a.m. on Saturday when his nephew was using the restroom and saw a cobra slither in. The cobra stood poised, ready to strike the nephew. Fortunately, the nephew was able to react quickly and fled the area while shouting for help.
He added that when his father responded, he brought his dogs along. The dogs began barking at the snake, and although one dog was bitten, the others bravely fought. Eventually, they managed to kill the snake by striking it with a piece of wood and decapitating it.
Alinsonorin further noted that this was their first encounter with a cobra, and he hopes to never see one again, given that their place has bushes.
“Kasagbotan amoa. Dili pod pwedi mamotol basin masuko ang mga tag-iya sa yuta. Mao gyud nay among pinakadakong problema kay maglakaw ra baya ang uban mga bata padung sa school. Daghang mga libon maagi-an,” Alinsonorin said.
Alinsonorin said they haven’t reported the incident yet since it’s a weekend and government offices are closed. However, he mentioned that they would definitely report the incident on Monday.
Last February 8, two more sightings of king cobras were reported in separate areas in Cebu: one in Asturias and one in Toledo City on the same day.
According to experts, the months spanning from January to April signify the mating season for king cobras, prompting their movement beyond their usual habitats in search of mates.
Additionally, experts have confirmed that the emergence of king cobras from their habitats can also be attributed to the gradual impacts of the El Niño and population growth, which have led to encroachment on their natural habitats by humans.
Despite the uptick in king cobra sightings in Cebu, a local veterinary doctor emphasized the importance of preserving these creatures.
She asserted that they typically “do not pose a threat to humans unless provoked.”
Dr. Alice Utlang, Cebu City’s special assistant on veterinary, agriculture, and fishery concerns, emphasized that king cobras, locally known as ‘banakon,’ are “harmless” animals.
Utlang further explained that king cobras are critically endangered species and face the risk of extinction due to declining numbers.
While the Philippines is home to four venomous snake species, including the king cobra, the Philippine cobra, Samar cobra or naja samarensis, and various vipers, the king cobra is the most commonly encountered venomous snake with high-risk exposure in Cebu.
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