Boa constrictor squeezes Vic man's funds

·1-min read

A Victorian snake owner has not been able to slither out of a four-figure fine after he was caught without a licence for a two-metre-long boa constrictor.

The snake was discovered in the house of a 44-year-old man from Nagambie in central Victoria in July 2021 after conservation officers were tipped off.

They were told he was keeping a carpet python without a licence but instead found what was later confirmed to be a boa constrictor.

At Seymour Magistrates Court on Thursday, the man was convicted, fined $1000 and ordered to pay $271 to have the snake put down, after pleading guilty to keeping a controlled pest animal without authorisation.

Boa constrictors are native to South America and the Caribbean and are classified as a pest in Australia.

The species and other pest animals are regulated as they can damage ecosystems, threaten local wildlife populations and risk community health and safety, Conservation Regulator regional manager Greg Chant said.

"There is no reason to keep these animals without the appropriate authorisation," he said in a statement.

"Before buying a pet, native or exotic, it is your responsibility to correctly identify the species and understand if they are legal to own in Victoria and if you require a licence."

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