Let me tell you how these monsters are trapped...They are so bulky and heavy and of such great girth that when they pass though the sand on their nightly search for food and drink they scoop out a furrow that looks as though a butt full of wine had been rolled that way. Now the hunters that set out to catch them lay traps at various places in the trails...These are made by embedding in the earth a stout wooden stake to which is fixed a sharp steel tip like a razor blade or lance head, projecting about a palm's breath beyond the stake and slanting in the direction from which the serpents approach. This is covered with sand so nothing of the stake is visible...When the snake, or rather the serpent, comes down the trail to drink, he runs full tilt into the steel , so that it pierces his chest and rips his belly right to the navel and he dies on the spot. The hunter knows that the serpent is dead by the cries of the birds, and then he ventures to approach his prey. Otherwise he dare not draw near.
From The Travels of Marco Polo
Edited by R.E. Latham