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Snake discovered in Toronto toilet

Andrea Stockton, staff writer
October 28, 2011 — A python and a corn snake were discovered in two separate Toronto homes earlier this week.

Yellow corn snake was taken to a Toronto reptile zoo
Yellow corn snake was taken to a Toronto reptile zoo

It's not a typical sight you'd expect to see during a late night bathroom break. But after lifting the toilet seat, a Toronto man discovered a snake coiled up inside the bowl Tuesday night.

Ramdat Punwassie called 911 immediately, but swears he wasn't scared of the slithery surprise. By the time police had arrived, the snake had moved to the bathtub. It was later identified as a ball python and was brought to the Toronto Animal Services.

It was the second time this week that a snake was discovered in the same neighbourhood. Earlier on Tuesday, police were called to capture a corn snake that slid through the wall of an apartment nearby. This yellow snake was taken to Reptilia, a reptile zoo located north of Toronto.

Police officials aren't sure if both snakes came from the same source, but assume they are pets that managed to escape.

Most snakes are known for being docile animals
Most snakes are known for being docile animals

Experts say neither snakes were venomous and were likely just looking for a nice place to curl up and stay warm.

“Corn snakes are known to hibernate in cooler climates they will cool their body temperatures down. They'll kind of settle down and basically lay dormant for a good chunk of the cooler period because there is a lot of heat to keep them warm and not a lot of food running around. Ball pythons on the other hand, come from a much more consistent climate. Their slower periods are more likely to be in the summer where there is a not a lot of food running around. The dryer hotter periods is when they take their rests,” explains Andre Ngo, Curator and Research Director at Reptilia.

And while it would be frightening for most people to find the creatures within their home, Ngo says they're relatively harmless.

“They are incredible docile animals and their big defence isn't to attack, their big defence is to hide and to escape...The vast majority of snakes are not what we consider vemonous, they eat small rodents, they don't want to deal with people. If you see a snake and you don't know what it is, if you just stop and stay away from it, it's going to leave you alone.”

Officials say people who own a snake are required to keep them confined.

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