Cal­gary zoo search team finds two miss­ing ser­pents

Cape Breton Post - - NATIONAL -

CAL­GARY (CP) — The saga of the snakes down the drain had a happy end­ing at the Cal­gary Zoo, Thurs­day.

The two large ser­pents were found just be­low the drain where they made their es­cape a day ear­lier, slith­er­ing into an open­ing left un­cov­ered by a keeper who was drain­ing a pool.

The Mala­gasy Gi­ant Hog­nose snakes, sib­lings named Maddie and Os­car, were be­ing checked out by zoo ve­teri­nar­i­ans af­ter their night on the lam.

Keeper Garth Irvine ad­mit­ted at a news con­fer­ence ear­lier in the day that he for­got to re­place the drain’s cover af­ter dis­cov­er­ing there was no hot wa­ter to re­fill the pool.

He said he left the pool with a 90kilo­gram snake that was far too big to fit down the drain sit­ting on top of it.

When he re­turned sev­eral hours later the mas­sive ser­pent had moved away and the two smaller snakes were gone.

Keep­ers re­moved two other snakes in the en­clo­sure small enough to fit down the drain and left it open in the hopes the two snakes, which are na­tive to Mada­gas­car, would re­turn seek­ing warmth.

Zoo of­fi­cials then called in the city of Cal­gary to make sure the lost ser­pents couldn’t slither their way into the sewer sys­tem, and were as­sured that the pair would be killed if they made it to the pump­ing sta­tion that con­nects the build­ing’s pipes to the out­side.

Zoo con­ser­va­tion di­rec­tor Cathy Gav­iller said a team of six peo­ple was search­ing the build­ing’s 275 me­tres of pipes with long, flex­i­ble flash­lights hop­ing to spot the miss­ing snakes.

The snakes’ es­cape is just the lat­est in a se­ries of high pro­file an­i­mal deaths and mishaps at the zoo.

The Cana­dian Press

A Mada­gas­car Gi­ant Hog­nose snake is shown in a 2004 hand­out photo. Two snakes which went miss­ing at the Cal­gary Zoo af­ter slith­er­ing down a drain in their en­clo­sure have been found.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.