Snakes are usually found crawling in places like the desert and woods, but when 23 baby pythons infested an Australian day care, authorities had to take action.
The infestation began when one single Australian carpet python was seen at the Mitchell Street Childcare Center in Darwin. All seemed fine until the following day, when seven more snakes were seen moving around the day care.
Director Louise DeBomford called the city of Darwin and two contractors were sent to investigate the issue. They peeked inside the center’s walls and discovered something shocking.
“They found the nest and mum,” DeBomford said.
The 10-foot-long mom, to be specific. The wall contained a total of 41 broken eggshells, suggesting there were still nearly 20 foot-long serpents unaccounted for.
“I thought there would have to be more than one because we had an inundation of snakes last year, about the same time,” DeBomford told Northern Territory News.
The non-venomous carpet python is relatively common in much of Australia and New Guinea. It can grow as large as 13 feet and, like all pythons, kills its prey by coiling around and suffocating or crushing it.
It is possible for a snake as large as the one found at Mitchell Street Childcare Center to harm a young child. In one example from 2009, a family’s 8-foot pet Burmese python escaped its cage and killed a 2-year-old girl as she lay in her bed.
Coincidentally, this is not the only snake surprise kids witnessed in Australia this week. Outside Townsville, Queensland, a 3-year-old boy and his mother were shocked Monday to find some eggs the boy had collected and placed in his closet weeks ago hatched into seven highly venomous Eastern brown snakes.
The good news is that no one was hurt in either case, but the kids at the day care seemed entertained as officials removed the snakes.