Family members kayaking with a man who was bitten in the hand by a rattlesnake originally told first-responders that the snake had fallen out of a tree into the man’s kayak. On Tuesday, they said the man actually picked up the snake with his bare hands, foxcarolina.com reported.
The man paddled over to what he thought was an alligator in the water, but when he discovered it was a snake he yanked it into the air, according to abcnews4.com. The rattlesnake bit him three times the hand.
The 28-year-old man was hospitalized, originally in critical condition. He and others were kayaking the Edisto River when the snake encounter occurred.
The man was rushed by ambulance to a medical center in Colleton County, South Carolina, but even though anti-venom was available there, the man was later flown by helicopter to another hospital in Charleston.
Colleton County Fire Chief Barry McRoy said the man’s friends managed to capture the snake, which he said wasn’t particularly big, between 1 1/2 and 2 feet long.
By the time they reached a boat landing and began the trip to the medical center, the man “was in bad shape, and greatly deteriorated,” McRoy said.
Yesterday, the Charleston hospital’s spokesman said the man was is listed in good condition.