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Boy (7) bitten by adder

By This is Lincolnshire  |  Posted: April 20, 2009

An adder similar to the one which bit little Jack Middleton

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A seven year-old Lincolnshire boy has returned home from hospital following treatment for an adder bite.

Jack Middleton from Billinghay, near Sleaford, was bitten by the snake during a trip to Ostler's Plantation in Woodhall Spa.

His hand swelled to several times its normal size.

He was kept in Lincoln County Hospital under observation and discharged on Saturday. He is doing well, a family member told the Echo.

Adders are Britain's only venomous reptile.

Although their venom poses little danger to a healthy adult human, the bite is very painful and requires urgent medical attention.

For more stories, see Monday's Echo.

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    Sophie, Billinghay  |  July 08 2009, 3:08PM

    Ali - I am the child in questions mother. For your information there were adults with them, we have been walking in these woods on a regular basis for over 20 years and had not seen an adder there before, however we did know they were there. Needless to say, after 20 years, poisonous snakes were not at the forefront of my mind. The children were running around enjoying the sunshine and exploring - that is what children do (unless you would rather I keep my son indoors on a computer game?!). My cousin had been stroking snakes at her school the previous week (Unbeknown to me as she lives 200 miles away from us) and when she saw the snake she thought she could do the same with it. As soon as we realised she had it we shouted at her to put it down, knowing it could have been an adder. The adder bit my son almost as soon as it was picked up. As you seem to be such an expert on venomous snakes in our area you will probably realise an adder is going to hang around and be petted before deciding to strike. It was instantaneous. I hope that answers your rather patronising questions as to why there were no parents supervising and why these children thought it was okay to pick up the snake. And for your information, there are NO warning signs at the woods about these snakes. The forestry commission want to protect there habitat as they are a protected species, and in a sense, rightly so. But again, I am sure you already know that. After this incident we have gone on to try to promote awareness of these snakes and to warn people to leave them alone, for their own safety and that of the snakes. But its nice to know that your concern so clearly lies with the snake and not the health of the small child who innocently picked up a snake out of curiousity, as normal children do tend to be. So in future, before you make damning comments about other peoples parenting skills, please do not jump to conclusions and get your information straight.

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    Chloe, Orpington  |  April 24 2009, 10:00AM

    Jack is my cousins son and i heard about this yesterday and it was my little cousin who picked up the snake, she is 6 and she probably didn't know that the snake could be dangerous. But I hope Jack is ok and I'm glad the snake didn't hurt my other little cousins.

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    Emma, Lincoln  |  April 20 2009, 11:35AM

    If the cousin handed the little boy the snake he probably thought it was ok to touch having trust in a family member, he's only 7 at the end of the day! Agree with the supervision point though.

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    ali, GRIMSBY  |  April 20 2009, 9:54AM

    This child was on the radio this morning saying his cousin picked the adder up and gave it to him.....no wonder he was bitten! There are many adders in those woods. People have to realise they are entering an area that is full of wildlife. It is there home and they should be left in peace. If you leave an adder alone it will leave you. Please have some common sense in the countryside.

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    ali, GRIMSBY  |  April 20 2009, 9:07AM

    The little boy was on the radio this morning saying that his cousin picked the snake up and handed it to him. Why were adults not watching what was going on and why does a child think it safe to pick up an adder? There are many adders in Ostlers Plantation. I grew up near there and there were signs warning people but I have to say the public needs to have some common sense too. You shouldnt need signs to remember you are in the woods and there may be wildlife!