Customer discovers venomous snake inside bag of Aldi lettuce
A couple received an almighty fright recently, when a rare and venomous snake emerged from their bag of Aldi lettuce without warning.
According to the Guardian, a Sydney Alexander White and Amelie Neate discovered the snake inside a bag of Aldi lettuce that the pair had bought from a store on Monday.
It transpired that the slithery companion in question was a juvenile pale-headed snake species named Hoplocephalus bitorquatus.
“It was moving around and flicking its little tongue out,” White recalled. “It was actually its tongue which let me know it wasn’t a giant worm. I would have been more comfortable with a worm, to be honest.”
According to the Guardian, the juvenile reptile was roughly 20cm in length. It had apparently been sleeping in the bag before White picked up the snake inside the bag of Aldi lettuce, carried it around the store and took it home in his backpack – a 10-minute bicycle ride.
“We didn’t have a trolley because neither of us had a dollar coin so we were just carrying it – in retrospect that kind of freaked me out,” he added.
The snake emerged from its leafy bed while the couple were unpacking their groceries. They called Wires, a wildlife rescue organisation who, after extensive research and photography of the snake, ascertained that it was a “pale-headed snake” and therefore “medically significant”.
“I thought that meant it had medicinal properties.
“Apparently it means that if you are bitten you have to go to hospital pretty quickly.” White said.
The couple later checked the rest of their grocery bags for any more stray slithery friends.
“I had a moment where I thought, what if the snake has come from something else?” White said. “So I kind of rustled through everything trying to find evidence of other snakes. But it looked quite at home in the lettuce and after it had exhausted itself looking around it went back inside the lettuce and fell asleep.”
The couple later ate the lettuce for lunch.
We previously reported on the remarkable case of a woman who received hospital treatment after a snake preserved in rice wine jumped out of the bottle and bit her hand. You can read that story in full here.