CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Fla. - The Port Charlotte man bit by a cobra is out of the hospital and talking to Wink News about the attack. 39-year old Frank Costello was cleaning a cage over the weekend when the snake bit his hand. Crews rushed viles of antivenin over from Miami-Dade County to save his life.
Wink News spoke exclusively to the reptile enthusiast who says even after his brush with death, he still loves venomous creatures. He is proud owner of more than 40 snakes, mostly pythons.
It was a Monocled Cobra that bit him on his hand almost a week ago. It took four viles of antivenin and four days at the Peace River Medical Center to recover from the potentially deadly attack, but he isn't holding a grudge.
"This snake on this particular day told me, 'I'm irritated. I don't want to be bothered.' And I chose to bother her anyway, overall it was my fault," he said.
Costello was cleaning the cobra's cage at Charlotte County's Ridgeway Exotics when the snake tagged him.
"Most of the time it just strikes you and doesn't do anything. When I noticed my pinkie finger swelling up, that's when I knew I had a problem. It felt like ten wasps stinging me in the same place at the same exact time. That's how severe the pain was. And then the pain started going up the arm a little bit and that's when we went to the hospital," he said.
Costello says this is the first time he's been bit, but his love of all things that slither hasn't diminished. Costello is working towards his venomous snake license. People need 1,000 hours. He is only twelve hours away from his goal. Cases like this one are investigated by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. According to Costello, FWC has closed its investigation.