AN ELDERLY man got more than he expected when he discovered a four-foot snake taking shelter from the cold weather in his garden shed in Limerick.
Upon discovering, the snake the man, who lives in the Roxboro Road area of the city, immediately contacted the Limerick Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (LSPCA) who dispatched an inspector to remove the snake.
According to Geraldine Nardonne, chairman of the LSPCA, the man was shocked when he discovered the snake for fear it might have been poisonous.
“It was an unusual request for the organisation,” she said.
Initially it was not known if the snake was hibernating in the shed or if it was dead.
Following consultations with experts based at Dublin Zoo, the snake was taken from the house and brought to the Underwater World store at the Castletroy Shopping Centre.
The store’s owner Kevin Fitzgerald, subsequently determined it was dead and, most likely, had died from the weather, which saw temperatures drop before zero last week.
Mr Fitzgerald later disposed of the reptile’s remains.
It is not known where the snake came from or how it ended up in the garden shed where is was found.
According to the LSPCA, American Corn snakes, which are not poisonous, are not uncommon in this country.
Some find their way here concealed in packing while others are sold by pet shops.
“They are classed by pets by those who buy them,” said Geraldine Nardonne.