Snake Bites Zoo Worker, No Known Antivenom Exists

Living Zoology / YouTube (Video Screenshot)

A California wildlife worker at the San Diego Zoo was hospitalized on Monday after being bitten by a venomous African bush viper they were handling.

The zoo said that the snake worker was caring for the animal in an area not open to the public when the unidentified person was bitten. According to the Seneca Park Zoo in Rochester, New York, there is no known antivenom for an African bush viper’s venom.

NY Post reported the San Diego Zoo saying, “In keeping with our protocols, the staff member was immediately taken to a hospital for evaluation and medical care, and we remain in close contact.”

The person is being monitored by doctors and our thoughts and prayers go out to their speedy recovery. The African bush viper, scientifically known as Atheris squamigera, can cause serious damage to the kidney, messes up blood flow, and causes severe inflammation, hemorrhaging, and tissue death.

A bite from this snake can also cause fevers or internal bleeding, which can certainly be fatal. Fortunately, the snake did not escape and was properly contained. It could have bitten many more people if it had gotten loose.

“Although the San Diego Zoo cares for a number of venomous reptiles, incidents like this are very rare, and the snake was contained at all times with no risk of an escape,”  the zoo said.

Hear More In The Video Report Below

Learn more about African bush vipers in the video below.