Definitely remain calm and don't panic because a venomous snake has busted loose from the Bronx Zoo, leaving zero clues as to its current whereabouts. The runaway, a slinky black mangrove snake lacking a clear agenda, has been missing since end-of-day Tuesday. But! Zoo officials really don't think you should be alarmed: this fugitive's reserved and privacy-seeking nature means it's probably just taking a little alone time, and doesn't want to see anyone, anyway.

According to ABC 7, sources close to the snake believe it slithered through the mesh covering on a vent in the JungleWorld exhibit, heretofore its home, and disappeared into the night. Zoo staff do not seem overly concerned about the truant. They've posted a relatively discreet notice on the window of JungleWorld's ticket booth informing visitors of the great escape, and asking anyone who spots the sneak—ahem, snake—to let the professionals know. In a statement to Gothamist, a Bronx Zoo spokesperson said:

On Wednesday (Aug. 7) we began notifying guests entering JungleWorld that at close of business on Tuesday a 3 ½- foot-long mangrove snake was missing from its exhibit. While we are confident the snake poses no threat to visitors, we placed a sign at the entrance of the exhibit out of an abundance of caution. Mangrove snakes, though mildly venomous, are not known to be dangerous to people. They are shy, timid, secretive in nature and active at night. We have every reason to believe the snake is in JungleWorld.

Mangrove snakes, in case the zoo is wrong and you happen to encounter this specimen outside the bounds of JungleWorld (or indeed, just roaming freely around the Bronx), are slender and shiny and black, with bright yellow scales covering their chins and banding their bellies. According to Smithsonian's National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute, they have empty black shark eyes and rear fangs packed with denmotoxin, which is not known to have killed any humans but could leave you with painful, discolored bite marks. Mangrove snakes are native to Southeast Asia, but as the Smithsonian casually notes without expanding on the backstory at all, "A population of mangrove snakes was also accidentally introduced to Texas."

Anyway, just to reiterate: If you do see the snake, DO NOT approach. A website for Thailand's national parks paints the mangrove as a "nervous" type that is "easily stressed" and will "strike repeatedly" out of fear. It just wants to be left alone! And yeah, how would you feel, living under the constant pressure to be ON all the time; to wiggle and hiss for the children banging their meaty paws against your walls and clamoring for a show, day in and day out, from now until you die, never a moment to yourself.

The snake is probably in JungleWorld. It's probably winding its way through the trees, just savoring this little patch of solitude. It probably won't swim (mangrove snakes can swim) into the sewer system, or slither onto public transit. (Although it bears noting, snakes freakin' love riding the subway.) Just keep your cool and let this secretive snake have a second, jeez!