Several days after purchasing a highly venomous cobra, a German teenager discovered that it was no longer in its terrarium.
What followed was one of the lengthiest and most expensive pet-hunts Germany has seen in recent years. The walls, floor and ceiling of O's attic apartment were dismantled and the two units on the ground floor below were also carefully searched. Flour was strewn on the floor in the hopes of collecting tracks. Strong, double-sided tape was installed to perhaps trap the cobra baby. The fire department even brought in mini-cameras to search the tightest and most inaccessible corners.
After the fire department removed and examined all the furniture, a construction company was called in to demolish the apartment. The house has now been sealed, and other renters in the building have been told they will need to live elsewhere for two months while the cobra (hopefully) starves. The cost of these interventions is well above €40,000; German authorities will apparently send the bills to the young snake enthusiast.
Link. Credit for photo of the redecorated apartment to ddp.