Year of Snake sees serpent sales soar in Hong Kong
HONG KONG (AFP) - As Hong Kong prepares to usher in the Year of the Snake, an increasing number of the reptiles are slithering their way into local households, with sales of the uncuddly pet rocketing.
Keeping snakes has become increasingly popular in the densely-populated city in recent years as animal lovers seek out less space-hungry pets.
And with the spotlight firmly on the reptile in the lead-up to the Lunar New Year on Sunday, sales have surged.
At Reptile Paradise, a store which first opened its doors in Hong Kong's Mong Kok neighbourhood in 1994, dozens of baby snakes, not more than a few weeks old, frantically try to climb their way out of small plastic boxes.