Umm I think my hubby would have turned the music up to drown out the screams for help.
A CAIRNS man has likely earned major brownie points at home after saving his wife’s mother from the jaws of a large python in his back yard.
Earlville’s David Yates heard yelling from his mother-in-law Lyubov Maistrenko, 72, after a 3.9m long scrub python latched onto her leg and *started entwining its body around hers.
She was attacked when she opened the door of Mr Yates’ chook pen to feed their chickens about 6.30am yesterday.
“I put my boots on to go to work, and the next thing I know my mother-in-law is bellowing,’’ he said.
“I looked outside and she’s leaning up against the chook pen, so obviously I thought she’d cut her hand or something trying to open it.
“I walk and go up there, and I see a snake that had attached itself to her right calf, about mid-height.”
Paramedics remove a 3.9m long python from a backyard after it attacked a 72 year-old woman at her home in Earlville.
Mr Yates, who works in the road industry, assured the terrified Ukrainian grandmother the snake was not venomous.
He then asked her to remain calm. He quickly grabbed a nearby tool to “relocate” the hostile reptile.
“I had to do a pretty rapid assessment, because it was too big to take off her,’’ he said.
“I needed something more aggressive, so I used due force to remove it.”
Once the python was unwrapped from his mother-in-law, she was left with a large, bloodied bite mark on her leg.
Mr Yates phoned an ambulance and paramedics arrived within eight minutes.
Ms Maistrenko was taken to Cairns Hospital with fears there may have been a compression injury. She was discharged a couple of hours later, with only the bite mark and bruising to her calf.
Mr Yates said he was relieved he had been home at the time of the attack.
“If nobody had been here, the outcome would have been very undesirable, because I don’t know whether she had done much to remove it herself,’’ he said.
“It would have wrapped itself around her leg, so it would have done serious damage.”
He said his mother-in-law did not threaten nor provoke the animal in any way prior to the attack.
“Obviously, I would say the snake’s been scoping out the chook pen for breakfast and she’s gone in there and disturbed it,’’ he said. “In disturbing it, she’s been attacked.”
He said snakes were not uncommon in the neighbourhood, but he had never spotted a serpent that long.
He had yet to break the news of the attack to his wife Liliya, who is holidaying in China with their daughter.
Scrub pythons, which can grow to more than 8m, are known to eat large mammals including kangaroos and *wallabies.
Cape York Herpetological Society president Michael Anthony said the attack was highly unusual for the species.
“Snakes don’t have good eyesight. They mostly rely on good smell, and heat-sensitive pits in their face that sense heat,’’ he said.
“So it’s probably been near the chooks and for some *reason it’s detected the (woman’s) movement, perhaps, and attacked. If she wasn’t rescued, it may have tried to swallow her leg.”