Just hanging around!
An enormous black snake was spotted enjoying the spring sunshine at a park in Pittsburgh this week.
Pittsburgh Animal Care & Control shared a photo of the massive reptile, which appeared to be several feet long, draped over a tree in the city’s Frick Park.
After a park visitor reported seeing the snake, animal control officers began searching for the animal, asking the public to “immediately notify police” if they came across the creature.
It has since been identified as a black rat snake by reptile specialists at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium.
“While not commonly seen in the park, this harmless species of snake is native to the area and very beneficial to the environment,” according to an update on the city of Pittsburgh’s website. “We thank the public for their interest and for helping us identify this park visitor.”
Black rat snakes, also known as eastern rat snakes, are nonvenomous and can grow up to 7 feet long, according to the National Wildlife Federation, which adds that these snakes are “actually very shy and at the sight of danger will either freeze or slither away.”
Black rat snakes often eat small animals including rodents, amphibians and young birds, so this snake may have scaled the tree in search of a spring picnic.
It must be the season for giant reptile sightings. This week, customers at a convenience store in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, got the fright of a lifetime when an enormous monitor lizard wandered into the shop.
A customer captured a video of the wild moment the lizard scaled the shelves, tongue flickering, before it was safely captured by reptile handlers and released back into some nearby (but hopefully not too nearby?) undergrowth.