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Cobra

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Cobras are venomous snakes found in Africa and Asia.

Cobras reside in both Asia and Africa, and consist of many species of snake, some of which are not in the same taxonomic family, and all of which are venomous, the venom of which can be fatal if left untreated. When threatened, cobras expand a section of their neck out and begin hissing before striking. In both Asia and Africa, notably in India, performers known as snake charmers often play a reed instrument, or pungi, to "charm" the snake, distracting the reptile from striking by swinging the pungi to and fro; the snake is unable to hear the pitch of the pungi and will often bite if the charmer remains still. Cobras fear only one animal, the mongoose, which eats cobras by provoking them to strike and dodging their bites until the snake grows too tired to move, at which point the mongoose kills and eats the snake.

In 1934 A.D, Alex O'Connell and Jonathan Carnahan were touring a marketplace in India and saw a snake charmer performing his act on a cobra: Jonathan, thinking the trick to be a fake, took the pungi from the charmer and began playing it badly out of tune and not moving to distract the snake. The snake rose up to attack when a mongoose jumped into the basket housing the snake, fighting it off so that it escaped from the basket. The snake charmer was angry that his cobra had escaped and demanded recompense.

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