Australian toddler Eli Campbell is fighting for his life after being bitten three times by a coastal taipan, the third most toxic snake on Earth.
Two-year-old Eli was bitten by the snake while collecting eggs from his family's chicken pen. His mother Brittany immediately applied a pressure bandage, a move snake catcher Richie Gilbert says almost certainly saved the boy's life.
"Because Brittany applied the bandage that bought Eli enough time", Gilbert told BuzzFeed News.
"When the paramedics arrived he was actually in pretty good shape, but then he suffered a cardiac arrest. Thankfully resuscitation attempts brought him back from the dead."
Elis was airlifted by helicopter to Bundaberg Base Hospital, and then taken to an intensive care unit in Brisbane, 500km from his home in Agnes Water, Queensland, where he remains in critical condition.
According to family friend Blake Hyland, the ordeal has "sent a shockwave through our small, tight-knit community".
"The situation has caused Eli's family to have to drop everything to be by his side at the hospital [in Brisbane] which is almost 500 kilometers away".
Hyland – whose wife Loulita is close friends with Eli's mum Brittany – has set up a crowdfunding page to help the family with the toddler's medical bills.
People are attempting to crowdfund $20,000 to support Eli and his family.
Hyland has also organised a snake awareness event to demonstrate snake bite first aid.
Sunshine Coast snake catcher Richie Gilbert has teamed up with a couple of mates to show local residents how to live safely alongside Australia's deadly snakes.
A deadly venomous snake possessing the third most toxic venom known, bites from the coastal taipan were almost always fatal until the introduction of antivenom in 1956.
According to a spokesperson for Queensland Ambulance Service, paramedics were called to a private address at Round Hill, QLD 4677, at 3:54pm on September 25, after a snake bite to the thigh.
The patient was airlifted to Bundaberg Base Hospital, then to Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in Brisbane. Although the patient was stable when paramedics arrived at the scene, he did go into cardiac address during the airlift to Bundaberg, but was revised and stabilised by crews.
The patient was never declared deceased.