Social media rescues snake
Oct 21, 2013 / 5:00 am
David Cooper has been an avid amateur herpetologist since he was 4-years-old, so when a friend of his came across a 4’ long snake on the Mission Creek Greenway on Sunday, he posted a photo of it on Facebook for David to identify.
“Chris knows that I’m more or less a reptile guy so he sent me the picture and asked what it was.”
At first David thought it might be an Indigo snake, but he has since determined that it is most likely a non-venomous Mexican black kingsnake.
“At first I had no idea what I was looking at," he said. "All I knew was that it wouldn't survive there.”
Since his friend had the foresight to mark the location using Google Maps, David and his girlfriend, Danielle Arnaly, were able to locate it within a half hour, at around 3 p.m. It was curled up next to a bench, only 15’ from where Chris first found it.
“It really didn’t put up much of a fight,” said David. “It was very cold, almost not moving at all.”
David and Danielle used a snake hook to get it into a pillow case and they plan to take it to a reptile expert in Penticton, where it will be rehabilitated and receive the care it requires.
Mexican black kingsnakes grow to a length of 72 inches, and this one appeared to be young, but in good condition and accustomed to human contact.
“It had obviously been well cared for,” he said.
Because of the lack of houses nearby and the fact that snakes don’t move far when cold, Dave, who describes himself as a lover of all wildlife, believes that it was intentionally released, possibly because it grew too large for its enclosure.
“It’s a tropical snake so I doubt it would have made it very far in this temperature. I’m sure it was released at the park by someone who couldn’t look after it any longer. It’s unfortunate.”
For anyone out there with an animal they can no longer provide care for, David has some advice.
“If you’re going to get rid of an animal, don’t just let it go in a park. Put it on Castanet or take it somewhere where it will be looked after properly.”
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