NEWS
05/08/2018 17:12 BST | Updated 06/08/2018 08:20 BST

A Snake Has Eaten A Pigeon On A Street In East London

RSPCA investigating how the boa constrictor got there.

A boa constrictor has been pictured eating a pigeon on an east London street.

Photos and video on social media showed the snake wrapped around the bird in the middle of the pavement outside a shop in Leytonstone.

Despite onlookers initially suspecting the reptile was a python, the RSPCA later confirmed it was in fact a boa constrictor.

The charity says it is encountering widespread neglect of reptiles, and has to rescue hundreds each year.

Video of the snake was shot by Rachel Garland from Stratford.

She told the BBC: “I wasn’t scared because it was moving so slowly and it was completely wrapped up in its pigeon.

“It was just trying to eat the pigeon, it wasn’t taking any notice of all the people.

“This guy then picked it up by its tail as it was wrapped around the pigeon and put it in a cardboard box.”

Dave Fawbert, the editor of London free magazine Shortlist, shared an image on Twitter on Saturday morning, captioned: “Just a python eating a pigeon on Leytonstone High Road #LondonLife”.

The photo shows the snake wrapped around a pigeon in the middle of a footpath outside a shop. 

The snake has been taken to a nearby wildlife centre, where its health is being assessed.

RSPCA inspector Rebecca Benson said: “We received a call yesterday morning reporting a stray snake in High Road, Leytonstone.

“I arrived to find the boa constrictor in a box and transported him to a wildlife centre where he is currently being assessed.

“I’m very keen to find out how he came to be in such a dangerous situation.

“Exposed like that on a street could have meant anything might have happened to him, he could have been run over by a car or attacked by another animal.

“It might be that he was an escaped pet, or more worryingly, someone may have deliberately dumped him and left him to fend for himself.

“Either way, anybody with any information can give me a call in complete confidence on our inspector’s appeal line by phoning 0300 123 8018.”