Boa constrictor discovered in Shropshire hamlet

The body of another snake of a similar size was also discovered nearby

Ed Chatterton
Wednesday 22 September 2021 11:39
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<p>The animal was six foot long </p>

The animal was six foot long

Villagers living in a quaint hamlet have reacted with horror after the RSPCA revealed a country lane near their homes was being used as a dumping ground for snakes.

The animal charity issued the chilling warning after a live six foot boa constrictor was discovered opposite a layby on the B5062 near Roden, Shropshire, on Friday.

The body of another long-deceased snake of a similar size was also found nearby prompting fears the road is being used as place to dump unwanted exotic pets.

Residents living in the village have been left spooked by the news with some concerned about letting their children or pets outdoors.

One local wrote on social media: “Is it just me or is this freaking anybody else out? I don’t want live 6ft snakes slithering around the village.”

Another added: “This is literally the stuff of my nightmares. My skin is crawling just thinking about it.”

One resident joked “Where’s Samuel L when you need him?” but another put: “This really isn’t funny. I’m concerned for my kids and dog. These animals can attack.”

Another social media user said: “You’ve got to think about these poor reptiles too, they won’t last long in our weather without the proper care.” One person replied: “Exactly, they will be hungry. And that’s why I don’t want to let my pet out. These animals can be brutal killers and would target something small.”

Boa constrictors use they jaws - which are lined with hooked teeth - for grabbing and holding prey before squeezing them to the point of suffocation.

Boas are said to “eat almost anything” they can catch in the wild - including birds, monkeys, and wild pigs.

They are non-venomous but their jaws can stretch wide enough to swallow large prey whole.

The RSPCA said they were contacted after the boa constrictor was discovered with a broken jaw by two motorists at around 4pm on Roden Lane.

The drivers managed to safely block the creature in with their cars before calling the police, who then closed the road.

RSPCA inspector Claire Davey, along with the charity’s animal rescue officer Rachel Ward, who specialises in exotic animals, attended the scene.

The boa was bleeding from its jaw and was seen coughing up blood after it is believed to have been hit by a car.

The officers managed to safely contain the reptile in a large duvet cover using a specialist pole with a hook.

It was taken to a vets and given pain relief but the reptile died later that night.

The RSPCA believes both reptiles were deliberately abandoned in the area and said they believe the country lane is being used as a place to dump unwanted pets.

Claire said: “Normally when we get a call like this we find the snake has been misidentified and it’s actually a small native species, so we were very surprised when we arrived and saw a six-foot boa constrictor on the road.

“It’s very sad that this beautiful creature’s life ended like this.

“Sadly we think this snake was probably abandoned as it’s a very isolated location and there are no houses around for at least a mile.

“The discovery of the body of another snake close by also leads us to believe that someone has deliberately left them.

“Unfortunately these sorts of incidents are not unusual; we receive hundreds of calls every year relating to reptiles, and some of these have either escaped or may have been abandoned by their owners.

“Sadly snakes and lizards often end up in our care as some owners don’t realise the commitment that is involved in meeting their needs.

“For example, an adult boa constrictor can grow up to 13-feet long and live for over 20 years in captivity, which is why we always urge people to do their research before taking on any exotic animal as a pet.”

SWNS

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