Fly-tipped rubbish held a sssssuprise for a West Norfolk Council worker who discovered a corn snake amongst the debris of an old kitchen.
Tim Borodka was shocked to find an orange snake slithering into the sand as he pulled back an old door while sorting through the rubbish on land off Mill Lane, Setch, on Friday last week.
Corn snakes are not native to the UK so this one would have been kept as an exotic pet. It is not known for sure whether it had escaped, or had been dumped out with the rubbish.
Mr Borodka, of Beachamwell, said: “It gave me quite a shock when I suddenly saw the snake slither away from me.
“I have come across lizards and wild grass snakes before, but nothing like this.
“It was obvious to me from the start that this was an exotic animal which did not belong there. It was a pretty cold morning too, so I am amazed he survived. He was borrowing down into the sand as if to get warm.”
Mr Borodka put the snake in a box and brought it to the RSPCA’s East Winch Wildlife centre where it is currently being cared for and will eventually be rehomed to a specialist centre.
Centre manager Alison Charles said: “We can only presume this poor snake was just dumped out with the rubbish.
“Corn snakes are classic escapees, as they can fit through small gaps and are deceptively strong so can lift enclosure lids if not properly secured, but in this case the snake was found so far from any homes and amongst fly-tipped rubbish so it seems likely that he was abandoned.
“This is such a callous way to treat a pet. Snakes such as these need very specific care and won’t necessarily be able to survive in the wild in this country.
“Sadly the RSPCA is experiencing widespread neglect and abandonment of reptiles as for many people an exotic animal represents too much of a commitment. We would encourage people who are thinking about taking on an exotic pet to research the needs of the particular species thoroughly and ensure they can meet them at all times.”