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Another 16 snakes found abandoned in Sunderland rubbish bin

Thirteen royal pythons were discovered inside two pillowcases last week. Sadly, one of them died. Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA has renewed its appeal for information after 16 more snakes were abandoned in pillowcases in Sunderland.

There were 15 corn snakes discovered inside one pillow case and one male carpet python inside another, which had been abandoned inside a bin behind Farringdon Fire Station on Saturday (15 February).

It comes after 13 royal pythons were discovered inside two pillowcases on Thursday and sadly one of the snakes died.

The snakes, discovered on Saturday, were rescued by inspector Heidi Cleaver and taken straight to the vets.

Fifteen corn snakes found abandoned. Credit: Fifteen corn snakes found abandoned.

Having heard about the other poor snakes being abandoned earlier in the week, I couldn’t believe it when the call came through to say there had been even more snakes found in the exact same spot. I discovered 16 snakes in two pink pillowcases by the fire station. These snakes had been left inside the bin so they were incredibly lucky they didn’t end up in landfill!

“It is really concerning to think that someone has had around 30 snakes or more which they have decided to abandon in this cruel and callous way. We were in the midst of Storm Dennis at the weekend when these snakes, who need heat and light in order to survive, were left outside in the cold with just a pillowcase to contain them. It would have been very stressful for the snakes to be in such close proximity to each other as well.

“We are now renewing our appeal for information and are extremely keen that anyone with any information about this gets in touch with us on the inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.”

– Heidi Cleaver, RSPCA Inspector
The corn snakes were found inside two pillowcases in a bin. Credit: RSPCA

Despite being dumped, the 16 snakes were in fairly good condition. They were taken to a vet to be checked over before going to a specialist reptile centre for further care.

The RSPCA is urging people in the area to stay vigilant in case there are more vulnerable snakes dumped in the same spot.

The snakes were discovered in a bin behind Farringdon Fire Station on Saturday (15 February). Credit: RSPCA

Snakes aren’t able to produce their own body heat so they rely on their environment to maintain their body temperature. If snakes become too cold they may be unable to feed or move normally, and their immune system will not work properly to fight disease, meaning the animal can become very ill.

Reptiles often end up in RSPCA care after people realise they're not easy to care for, or once the novelty wears off. Unfortunately, many people are unaware of how much of a commitment these animals are when they take them on, as their needs are just the same as they would be in the wild and are fundamentally linked to certain behaviours, diets or environmental conditions that can be difficult to replicate in a home.