US & Canada

Missing deadly US cobra found under tumble dryer

Owner Mike Kennedy with a cobra Image copyright WFTV
Image caption Owner Mike Kennedy cares for exotic animals at his property called the Dragon Ranch

A king cobra missing for more than a month has been found beneath a neighbour's clothing dryer.

The 8 ft (2.5m) venomous snake was discovered about half a mile from its enclosure in Orange County, Florida.

Homeowner Cynthia Mullvain called authorities after hearing hissing sounds whilst doing her laundry Wednesday night.

Local media report that the snake has now been returned to its owner, who runs an exotic animal sanctuary.

Mike Kennedy discovered his snake, named Elvis, missing on 2 September after returning from a trip.

Authorities identified the snake as the missing cobra using a microchip inside the animals's body.

Mr Kennedy has permits for all the animals on his property, including snakes, crocodiles, alligators, and a leopard.

Image copyright Abc
Image caption The cobra was captured and returned to its owner

Nearby school children were banned from playing outdoors in the early days of the search.

He has been fined by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for not reporting the snake missing in a "timely manner", which he is contesting.

The king cobra is native to Asia and is the world's longest venomous snake. It can grow up to 16 ft (5m). A single bite contains enough venom to kill an adult elephant.

Read more about king cobras at BBC Nature