NR11-14 July 22, 2011
UPDATED – July 23, 2011
HONOLULU – The Honolulu Police Department (HPD) delivered another snake to the Hawai`i Department of Agriculture (HDOA) today after it was turned in by its owner under the State’s Amnesty program.
Initial information to HPD’s CrimeStoppers program indicated the snake is a boa constrictor; however, the species and size has not been confirmed. (The snake has since been identified as a ball python and is three-feet-six-inches long.) HPD officers went to the residence in Whitmore Village; however, the snake was recovered in Waialua and will transport the snake to HDOA’s Plant Quarantine Branch. This is the fifth snake that has been captured or turned in recent weeks. To link to HDOA’s previous news release on recent incidents, go to: https://hawaii.gov/hdoa/news/news-releases-2011/10-illegal-animals-turned-in-in-two-weeks/
Ball pythons are non-venomous. They can grow up to about six feet in length and have a normal diet of small mammals such as mice and rats. Snakes have no natural predators in Hawai`i and pose a serious threat to Hawai`i’s environment. Many species also prey on birds and their eggs, increasing the threat to endangered native birds. Large snakes can also be a danger to the public and small pets.
Individuals who have illegal animals are encouraged to turn them in under the State’s amnesty program, which provides immunity from prosecution. Illegal animals may be turned in to any HDOA Office, Honolulu Zoo, Panaewa Zoo on Hawai`i Island or any Humane Society – no questions asked and no fines assessed. Anyone with information on illegal animals should call the toll-free PEST HOTLINE at
643-PEST (7378) or CrimeStoppers on your island.
The maximum penalty under State law for possessing and/or transporting illegal animals is a class C felony, $200,000 fine and up to three years in prison.
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