'Really aggressive' snake on the loose

PEOPLE in Colchester have been advised to keep a lookout for a “really aggressive” snake that could be on the loose in the town after being dumped by a heartless owner.

Elliot Furniss

PEOPLE in Colchester have been advised to keep a lookout for a “really aggressive” snake that could be on the loose in the town after being dumped by a heartless owner.

Two African Rock Pythons measuring 10ft and 4ft long were found in a sports bag in Magdalen Street earlier this week and were handed in to the town's main police station.

RSPCA officer Donna Green took the bag away and delivered it to a wildlife rescue centre in south Essex, where it was revealed that a separate open side pocket showed signs that a third snake had been inside it - but was nowhere to be seen.


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Sue Schwar, who runs the South Essex Wildlife Hospital in Orsett, near Thurrock, was asked to look after the snakes and said it was down to “callous” individuals that exotic creatures were discarded in such a manner.

She said: “Rock Pythons are really aggressive. We don't want to promote them as good pets otherwise they would end up dumped in a bag again.

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“It's callous individuals who don't take responsibility for their animals and just leave them. These two have only been here for a couple of days but we have got them indefinitely until we can find someone experienced enough to take them in and can offer them a good home.

“There is a side pocket to the bag that was found in which we found snake skin and faeces that would suggest there was another snake in there. But we might never know.”

She said the snakes were not poisonous but were constrictors that could pose a danger to people if they managed to wrap around them.

Rosie Russon, chief RSPCA inspector for Essex, said the discovery of abandoned exotic animals was becoming “fairly common”.

She said: “It is really irresponsible. To abandon them in a bag is ridiculous, really. Anyone can buy these animals from most pet shops, unfortunately.

“If people are having difficulties with exotic animals they can call the helpline number rather than resorting to abandoning them like this.”

Anyone experiencing problems with this kind of pet can contact the helpline on 0300 1234999.

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