October 30, 2005

Firefighters capture python in shop near Paris

PARIS (Reuters) - A dozen French firefighters were called
in to cut their way to a 3 meter (10 ft) python hiding a shop
just outside Paris, an official said on Sunday.

"We were alerted by someone who said he had seen a snake on
the roof of a shop," a fire brigade spokesman said.

"We don't know where it escaped from. Probably from an
apartment," he said. Police had taken charge of the reptile.

The firefighters cut a hole in the false ceiling of a shop
in Gentilly, south of Paris, to retrieve the snake.

Pythons are among the longest species of snakes. They feed
on birds and small mammals, squeezing them to death.