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Emmanuel Tangco, Zoo Owner, Sleeps With Snakes To Celebrate Chinese New Year (PHOTO)

02/04/2013 07:04 pm ET | Updated Feb 05, 2013

In honor of the Year of the Snake, one zoo owner in the Philippines is doing something unusual to celebrate the beginning of the Chinese New Year: He's welcoming snakes into his bed.

Malabon Zoo owner Emmanuel Tangco cuddled up to several snakes for a series of Reuters photos taken on Feb. 3.

In one photo (below), Tangco is seen reading a book in bed while the snakes slither over his body.

emmanuel tangco snakes

Zoo owner Emmanuel Tangco reads a book to his snakes in his bedroom in Malabon, Metro Manila, on Feb. 3, 2013. (Reuters/Erik De Castro)

According to the Chinese calendar, the Year of the Snake begins on Feb. 10, during the lunar new year, and lasts through Jan. 30, 2014.

Malabon Zoo recently added 50 snakes to its collection in preparation for the Year of the Snake, Philippine news outlet ABS-CBN News reports.

Surprisingly, this is not the first time a man has shared sleeping quarters with snakes.

In 2010, snake enthusiast David Jones claimed a world record after sharing a room with 40 venomous snakes for 114 days. However, a nighttime "minder" kept the snakes a safe distance from Jones' bed while the daredevil slept.

Tangco was likely not in as much danger, since the snakes pictured, including at least one albino Burmese python, are not venomous. The Burmese python, a subspecies of the Indian python, kills its prey by squeezing it, rather than with a poisonous bite, according to National Geographic.

The pythons have caused quite a stir recently in Florida, as hundreds of hunters have been tapped to kill the invasive species, which preys on native creatures in the region. According to the World Wildlife Fund, loose Burmese pythons are considered "major pests" in the Florida Everglades.

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