Thursday, January 19, 2006

Vegan rat snake?

Not really, but at least doesn't eat live rodents, instead it befriends them...
Have to wonder at the zookeepers' sense of humour, though. It'd be the equivalent of a farmer calling his pigs "Pork chops" or his chicken "nuggets"...

This from Yahoo news...

TOKYO - Gohan and Aochan make strange bedfellows: one's a 3.5-inch dwarf hamster; the other is a four-foot rat snake. Zookeepers at Tokyo's Mutsugoro Okoku zoo presented the hamster — whose name means "meal" in Japanese — to Aochan as a tasty morsel in October, after the snake refused to eat frozen mice.
But instead of indulging, Aochan decided to make friends with the furry rodent, according to keeper Kazuya Yamamoto. The pair have shared a cage since.
"I've never seen anything like it. Gohan sometimes even climbs onto Aochan to take a nap on his back," Yamamoto said.
Aochan, a 2-year-old male Japanese rat snake, eventually developed an appetite for frozen rodents but has so far shown no signs of gobbling up Gohan — despite her name.
"We named her Gohan as a joke," Yamamoto chuckled. "But I don't think there's any danger. Aochan seems to enjoy Gohan's company very much."
The Tokyo zoo also keeps a range of mostly livestock animals, and promotes "cross-breed interaction," according to Yamamoto.
But Gohan and Aochan's case was "was a complete accident," Yamamoto said.


Anonymous benconservato said...

The snake can see when it is better not to eat it's friends... not that I would ever have the heart to eat my friends. That is the best!

6:28 PM  

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