Georgia Man Films Snake Eating Bigger Snake on Walk to Mailbox

A Georgia man stumbled upon a snake eating another, larger snake while walking to collect his mail.

Eighty two-year-old Haddock resident Tom Slagle spotted a kingsnake—a type of constrictor—devouring a venomous timber rattlesnake. Slagle managed to capture a footage of the event.

In the video, the bottom half of the rattlesnake can be seen protruding from the kingsnake's mouth. The kingsnake continues to move its jaws around the rattlesnakes body, swallowing it whole.

The video was reposted to Facebook by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), with the caption: "Kingsnake vs. Timber Rattlesnake: It's a snake eat snake world out there."

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The footage shows a kingsnake devouring a rattlesnake. Georgia DNR / Tom Slagle

A DNR spokesperson told Newsweek that a kingsnake's diet normally consists of rabbits, rodents, amphibians, turtle eggs, lizards and other snakes—it has even been observed eating members of their own species.

"These constrictors are renowned for their ability to overcome and eat venomous snakes, such as the timber rattlesnake you see being consumed in the video," the spokesperson said.

Kingsnakes are not venomous and kill their prey with constriction. They are able to capture venomous species by striking, and grasping the prey by its head. The snake will then wrap itself around its prey and constrict, before swallowing it whole and headfirst.

Kingsnakes are resistant to venoms that would kill a human. Venom from pit-vipers, copperheads, cottonmouths and rattlesnakes do not faze the species. They can rattle their tail and bite if they feel provoked, but is usually are relatively tame species and are sometimes kept as pets.

The rattlesnake being consumed appears of a heavier girth than the kingsnake.

Georgia DNR explained what happens in this situation in its Facebook post: "If the snake being eaten is longer than the kingsnake, it will get folded before being swallowed."

The video has amassed hundreds of comments. Social media user Michelle Willet Keller wrote: "I wanted to see it finish this meal and see how well it moved afterwards—it seems like such a HUGE meal!"

Others commented that the rattlesnake itself appeared to have recently finished a large meal, due to its wide girth. Ashley Brock said: "And that's exactly why you don't kill the good snakes!! Thanks for sharing. That's amazing."

Rattlesnakes can occasionally slither into properties looking for food and shelter, and are sometimes seen as a nuisance. Although they usually only bite when provoked, this can inevitably cause conflict. Their bites are rarely fatal however require medical attention immediately.

Kingsnakes reach a maximum length of about 6 feet. On average, females grow from 4 to 4.5 feet, while males typically grow to 3 or 3.5 feet. Timber rattlesnakes reach similar lengths. These venomous snakes can reach a maximum length of 7 feet long.

Snake season in Georgia is in full swing, with snakes start to be more active in the warmer spring and summer months.