A DUBLIN man has become the recipient of the first venomous snake bite ever recorded in Ireland.
Legend has it that St. Patrick used the power of his faith to drive all of Ireland’s snakes into the sea.
However, according to science it was more likely the Ice Age that prevented the reptiles from settling on the island of Ireland.
That hasn’t prevented people across Ireland owning snakes as pets, of course.
Which explains how this week a 22-year-old man ended up being treated with anti-venom in Connolly Hospital.
The owner of a venomous puff adder, the Dubliner was bitten by his pet snake.
Considered one of the most aggressive and dangerous snakes of its kind, the puff adder carries a particularly venomous bite.
Most commonly found in Morocco and Western Arabia, the species is responsible for more snakebite fatalities than any other African snake.
Just one bite can lead to necrosis of the flesh and even death if left untreated.
Forced to visit his local hospital, doctors treating the biten Dublin man got in touch with the National Reptile Zoo for help.
Speaking to Newstalk, James Hennessy, the director the National Reptile Zoo, said the case represents the first time they have received an anti-venom request.
"Puff adder venom is pretty nasty," Mr Hennessy explained.
"It's going to start digesting and disintegrating all around the area of the bite, and that will continue up the limb as well.
"It will then cause massive internal issues as well, if not treated."
According to Hennessy, to his knowledge, this is "the first recorded venomous snakebite in Ireland".
Where’s St Patrick when you need him?