9-foot albino python found in Bon Air gets new home

Posted at 7:21 PM, Jun 24, 2013
and last updated 2013-06-24 19:27:07-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WTVR)--No one expected to see a a 9-foot albino Burmese Python slithering along a street in Bon Air.

Richard Smith captured the snake and dropped it off at Off The Ark Exotic Pets in Chesterfield. He said he pulled over when he saw it headed towards a drain, and placed it in a bag.

Vinny Ferraiolo, who owns the pet store, says the male albino python is four to five years old and weighing in at 15 pounds has not eaten well in the past couple of months.

Ferraiolo believes the snake was someone's pet and they released within the last few days to last couple of weeks set it free.

While it is illegal to abandon a pet, it is not illegal to own a Burmese Python. Last August a red-tailed boa constrictor and an albino Burmese python were discovered in Chesterfield County. Ferraiolo also housed those.

New government laws won't allow the exotic snakes to be sold and shipped across state lines, but anyone with a valid state ID can purchase similar snakes.

For now, Ferraiolo says he will hold onto the snake to try to improve its health. The man who found the snake is now considered the owner, though Ferraiolo would like to know the original owner's story of what exactly happened to the snake.

Chesterfield County Animal Control are not investigating since no complaint has been filed.