Python with full stomach found in couple’s backyard – what did she eat?
A python with a massively distended midsection was discovered lounging in a Pennsylvania couple’s backyard, leaving rescuers wondering what type of creature it had consumed.
An unnamed couple found the 8-foot-long female python on Oct. 4 slithering about in their Lancaster yard with a bulging belly, reports Lancaster Online. Thinking quickly, they loaded the ᴇsᴄᴀᴘᴇᴅ constrictor into a trash can and brought it to That Fish Place-That Pet Place, where workers kept the 2-year-old snake warm and called Jesse Rothacker at the Forgotten Friend Reptile Sanctuary.
The sanctuary’s owners said in a Facebook post that they’re not exactly sure what the snake ate while it was hanging out in Lancaster County, but it seems to be well-fed.
“These snakes are actually built to have a slow metabolism, so a meal like that could sustain her for several months,” Rothacker said.
“It was interesting to us to figure out, you know, is this a raccoon or a groundhog or a feral cat or a possum? So, it was neat to solve that mystery,” Rothacker said.
On Sunday, a vet tech and doctor from Animal Hospital of Dauphin County conducted an x-ray on the python. Lab results determined the animal that the python swallowed had four legs, a tail and organs from an animal who’s digestive process is characterized by hindgut fermentation. The sanctuary believes these signs point to it being a possum.
Rothacker said the snake is digesting the big meal just fine. “She’s getting out here to stretch in the sun and that’s actually helping in her digestive process. So, I’m very happy with what we’re seeing,” he said. Rothacker said the snake is likely a house pet. The people who found her said she’s ᴇsᴄᴀᴘᴇᴅ a few times before.