San Luis Obispo County, Calif., Animal Services officers found 42 ball pythons inside a self-storage unit on Wednesday at an unidentified facility in Arroyo Grande, Calif. Authorities responded to a report of an abandoned animal at the storage property on Grand Avenue when they discovered the snakes in stacked plastic containers inside the unit, according to sources.
In all, 22 snakes were dead and in “various stages of decomposition,” Eric Anderson, Animal Services manager, told a source. The 20 alive snakes were transported to the agency’s shelter in rural San Luis Obispo to be evaluated.
Ball pythons are popular pets that can be purchased from pet stores and reptile breeders. Named for their habit of curling into a tight ball, adult females can typically grow to 5 feet in length, while adult males tend to be smaller at 2 to 3 feet, according to “Reptiles Magazine.” When properly cared for, the non-venomous constrictors have a life expectancy of 30 years or more.
The incident remains under investigation, Anderson said. It isn’t clear what charges the self-storage tenant responsible for storing the snakes may be facing.
- Santa Maria Times: 42 Snakes Discovered at Arroyo Grande Storage Facility
- The Tribune: Over 40 Pythons Seized at Arroyo Grande Storage Unit