A Kenilworth man made a shocking discovery after a snake fell out of a parasol in the garden of his family’s home.
Danny Buckley, who lives with his wife Nicki and their two children Jude and Eva in Birches Lane, Kenilworth, was moving the parasol in the evening when the snake, believed to be a corn snake, fell out of the top of it.
Mr Buckley said: “When I put the parasol down there it was in front of me.
“It was bright red and it startled me somewhat - I don’t know if I used any expletives when I saw it. I think it was about one-and-a-half metres long.
“The kids came out and thought it was the most exciting thing ever.”
Mr Buckley managed to capture the snake using a large plastic container.
When I put it in the box it lunged forward and hissed - it was quite excited, put it that way.Danny Buckley
Once the snake was trapped, he called the RSPCA but since the discovery was made in the evening no one from the society was able to come and collect it, forcing the family to keep the snake overnight in their house.
He added: “I was a bit shocked when the RSPCA told me no-one could come.
“I thought: ‘I’ve got a snake here and you want me to keep it here until the morning?’
“When I put it in the box it lunged forward and hissed - it was quite excited, put it that way.”
He placed some bricks on top of the upside-down box as a temporary solution. Mr Buckley then found the lid for the box, drilled some holes in it and put the lid on, which meant the snake could not escape.
Despite this, ten-year-old Jude wanted to put locks on all the doors, just in case.
When asked why he did not run away or attack the snake when he first discovered it, Mr Buckley said: “I thought it was beautiful, and I was worried about it being outside.
“I put it in a box with holes in because I didn’t want it to die.”
Mrs Buckley thought the snake may have got into the garden through a flue running into it and described her encounter with the snake soon after her husband found it.
She said: “I walked round the corner and there it was on our patio - if it had dropped near me I’d have probably hit it with a shovel.
“Danny was the hero on the day, we didn’t know if it was venomous at the time so he was quite brave.
“I can laugh about it now but what if it had been in the house?
“It’s got to belong to someone.”
Corn snakes are native to the USA and do not exist in the wild in the UK.
They are not venomous and are relatively docile compared to other species, meaning they are often kept as pets.