Chaos as 150 deadly snakes kept to make wine invade Chinese city

Terrified neighbours fled their homes when a city was invaded by more than 150 deadly venomous cobras, according to a report in the Mirror.

The snakes measuring between 20cm and 30cm – who were being kept by a distiller to make the ancient delicacy snake wine – had escaped into an alley in Foshan, a city in south-eastern Guangdong province of China, causing chaos.

“We had more than 100 calls in a few minutes,” said a police spokesman.

“They were popping up through cracks in walls, down gutters, out of drains, in alleyways and side-streets. Everywhere all at the same time.

“People were hysterical and were begging for people to come and catch the snakes,” he added.

So far only 100 of the deadly reptiles have been recovered by local snake experts.

Meanwhile the snake’s owner Lu Zhong admitted ‘losing’ the snakes, although he is not sure how they escaped: “I keep lots of snakes as we make snake wine. One day I returned to find many snakes missing. They had managed to escape.

The tradition of drinking snake wine dates back more than 3,000 years in China to the early Zhou Dynasty.

It is an alcoholic beverage produced by infusing whole snakes in rice wine or grain alcohol.

Fans believe the snake’s venom – diluted in alcohol – becomes a health tonic that can restore the body’s natural balance.