Stray snake said to be on the loose in Kirkcaldy

© DC ThomsonThe ball python which has gone AWOL in the Seafield area of Kirkcaldy.
The ball python which has gone AWOL in the Seafield area of Kirkcaldy.

A large snake is thought to be on the loose in a residential area of Kirkcaldy.

Kevin Hopkins, 24, has appealed for help in finding his pet python after it escaped from its tank on Wednesday, as he was in the process of moving house.

Kevin said the 5ft 5inch-long royal ball python, called River, is docile and has a “gentle nature”, although the news a snake could be at large in the Lang Toun met with a mixed reaction on social media.

He said: “I’ve looked absolutely everywhere and I can’t find her in my house.

“Time is ticking because snakes need warmth and it’s not exactly warm any more.

“If she has managed to get out of the house then she won’t last very long because she needs heat to survive.

“I’m fearing the worst but hopefully someone out there sees her.”

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Kevin, who has had River for around five months, revealed the python previously escaped at the end of May but was quickly found but he is losing hope as each hour passes in the colder weather.

The snake somehow managed to get out of its tank at Kevin’s home in the Seafield area of town, at some point on Wednesday. Kevin is frantically searching the property and surrounding areas as he prepares to move back to Edinburgh.

He said: “I have to hand my keys back on Monday so I will be back and forward to Kirkcaldy over the weekend.

“She doesn’t bite or anything and she’s more than likely to be curled up somewhere.

“She’s really well natured and if anybody does see her then I could come to them straight away to get her.”

Ball pythons are said to be a good choice for first time snake owners because they are a relatively small and placid species of snake which tend to curl up and hide their heads when threatened.

However, some have been known to be aggressive and can have a nasty but non-venomous bite.

Their diet consists mostly of small mammals, such as rats, shrews, mice and birds.

Kevin has taken his search to social media in the hope someone finds his pet, and his post has been shared hundreds of times on Facebook.

The SSPCA have been made aware of the situation and are investigating.

Scottish SPCA Chief Superintendent Mike Flynn said, “Snakes are excellent escape artists so it is important owners ensure their vivariums are completely secure.

“If a vivarium doesn’t already have a lock on it, we would recommend having one fitted.

“Snakes need heat and can’t survive for long outside in the cold. However, it is possible a snake would manage to survive for a long time inside a wall cavity, provided it is able to feed and there is a source of heat.”

“Anyone who comes across this snake can contact our Animal Helpline on 03000 999 999.”