Ball python turned into state under amnesty program

Ball python turned into state under amnesty program

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A 4-and-a-half-foot ball python was turned into the state Department of Agriculture under its amnesty program over the weekend.

The snake, which is illegal to own in Hawaii, weighs about 4-and-a-half pounds.

Snakes are banned in the state because they have no natural predators and pose a threat to the environment.

Ball pythons are non-venomous and are common in the pet trade on the mainland, the state Agriculture Department said.

They are native to Western and West-Central Africa and are related to boas, which are also constrictors that subdue their prey by coiling around and suffocating it.

Ball pythons can grow up to 6 feet long.

Under the amnesty program, animals that are illegal to own in Hawaii may be turned into any Department of Agriculture office, zoo, or at the Hawaiian Humane Society. There are no questioned asked and no fines assessed.

Anyone caught with an illegal animal faces up to three years in prison and a $200,000 fine.

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