Ball python found in Fond du Lac
FOND DU LAC, Wis. (WLUK) -- A ball python probably has a good story to tell, but right now it's still a mystery. It was found trying to cross the street in Fond du Lac Wednesday.
A driver saw it and called police who then called the local humane society, which then called Heather Rogers of Critter Junction pet rescue.
"We're both expecting to show up and find, like a 12-foot Burmese, something aggressive and scary," Rogers told FOX 11 News.
Instead they found a three-foot ball python, a fairly common, yet exotic pet.
"Bend down, pick it up and as soon as I picked it up, it's like, 'oh my gosh! Warmth!'" Rogers described.
It was drizzly and chilly Wednesday when the snake was found. Rogers says the snake was very cold.
"As cold as she was, I mean, it's entirely possible that she would have passed away through the night," said Fond du Lac County Humane Society Manager Renee Webb.
Rogers told us snakes are cold-blooded, so they can't survive without a steady heat source. Ball pythons are native to very warm African countries.
"Metabolism slows down. They're unable to hunt when it's this cold. This isn't the weather for them. This isn't the climate where they can thrive," Rogers explained.
The snake, now named Bonnie, is doing well after a good meal and warming up.
"She was standing straight up for most of the evening yesterday, trying to get as close to the heating lamp as she possibly could," said Rogers.
It's unclear if Bonnie escaped or was set free, but this story is a good reminder to do your research before adopting a pet like a snake.
"Just really want to make sure that you're really prepared and exotics can be extremely expensive to own," Webb advised.
And if you have an exotic pet you can't care for, do not let it loose.
Experts told us it can be bad for the local ecosystem, for one thing.
"A number of different rescues in Wisconsin. Usually your best bet is just to call the Humane Society and ask," Webb explained.
"It's cruel to the animal to let it free. Honestly, they're not going to survive," Rogers added.
Luckily for Bonnie, someone found her first.
Under state law, Critter Junction will hold the python until close of business on Monday. The local humane society is not currently equipped to care for snakes.
If an owner does not come forward, the snake will be put up for adoption.