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Arafat Mwanyoka: Kwale Man Keeping Different Species Of Snakes To Guard His Home

Arafat Mwanyoka is a snake charmer from Diani in Ukunda, Kwale County who keeps different types of snakes in his compound.

Despite most people fearing snakes, Mwanyoka and his family make money from rearing the reptiles.

He says he has studied, and he understands all types of snakes that he keeps.

Here is Mwanyoka’s story as told by WoK.

Jungle Snake Park

At his farm dubbed, Jungle Snake Park, Mwanyoka keeps different types of snakes including the black mamba, green mamba and the python including others.

He feeds the snakes with chicken and rabbits which he also rears in his farm.

Mwanyoka explained that with feeding the snakes with animals that he rears, he is assured of the reptiles’ health as they don’t eat animals with parasites.

He noted that he mostly gets the animals from local forests in Kwale.

“…like this one was so skinny because life in the wilderness can be too hard for them. I figured that because it was too skinny it must have been infected with worms,” Mwanyoka said.

In an interview with Citizen TV, Mwanyoka explained that he understands different types of snakes in and out.

“When I look at a snake, I can tell if it’s a male or female, if it’s on heat or if it’s pregnant. I can also identify sick snake or the ones that seem crazy,” he said.

While starting off, he explained that his neighbours were questioning his decision to keep snakes, however, noting that he has earned their trust now.

“My neighbours were seeing me as a crazy person and they’d say how I was risking my life,” Mwanyoka said.

However, although his prowess in snake handling, he was once bitten by one of his snakes, and he was rushed to the hospital fully paralyzed.

“It was Christmas day and I had a lot of visitors. I took one of the snakes out and showed the guests. However, it got to a point where the snake didn’t want any of that and it bit me

“Within 15 minutes I was rushed to the hospital totally paralyzed,” Mwanyoka said.

Through his business, the snake charmer has also provided employment for most people in his home area.

Parents in his locality have also allowed their children to visit Mwanyoka’s farm and learn how to handle the snakes.

He also keeps crocodiles, chameleons and geckos.