UK: grass snake causes printer error

Grass snake

From the Daily Echo in Britain:

Slithery customer just adder be a grass snake

June 4th, 2007

A RANGER got a shock at the Avon Heath Country Park near Ferndown when he opened up a jammed printer to find a snake looking back at him from inside the machine.

The wily grass snake got into the visitor centre at the park a week ago and has been eluding attempts to capture it ever since, popping up in unlikely places and causing havoc.

The slithery intruder was first spotted by park ranger Katy Thompson.

She said: “I just saw a tail disappearing under my desk and I spent about two hours tentatively moving the furniture because I didn’t know if it was a grass snake or an adder.

I found it and saw it was a grass snake but then it disappeared up into the cavity wall.”

A couple of days later ranger Carol Dawkins was sitting at her desk when she heard a rustling but the snake again disappeared before she could grab it.

On Thursday Ian Cross went to print some paperwork in the office and an error message came up on the printer.

He opened up the section where the cartridges were and found the snake looking up at him from inside the machine.

This time he managed to get hold of it and returned the animal, completely unharmed by its adventures, to the outside world.

Grass snakes are the largest reptiles native to the UK.

They have been widespread across England but have become rarer in recent years.

Grass snakes found on North York Moors: here.

14 thoughts on “UK: grass snake causes printer error

  1. Snake caught up in printer queue

    December 4th, 2008

    SNAKES often turn up in strange places, but this brown tree snake has decided to join the digital age.

    It has set up home in a printer of Lismore couple Denis and Marie Matthews.

    Marie is the publicity officer for the Friends of the Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens and one of her jobs is to produce the group’s monthly newsletter.

    So when Brian, who is the group’s secretary, went to print off the envelopes for the newsletter he couldn’t get anything out of the printer.

    That’s when he found the metre long reptile curled up comfortably in the printer and causing a paper jam.

    Denis managed to shift the reluctant snake with the help of a long pointer, but only after attempts to coach it out through the back of the printer failed.

    “When I used a long pointer to encourage the snake to move, it reluctantly came out through the front, under the monitor screen and round the back of the computer case,” he said.

    But that isn’t the end of the story.

    The snake was still there the next day and Denis suspects it is still in the computer room as he frequently finds small objects knocked from shelves.

    Luckily for Denis the snake doesn’t seem to be typical of the species.

    The nocturnal brown tree snake is often referred to as the night tiger and is usually very aggressive when confronted.

    It is venomous, but thanks to the fangs being at the rear of the snake’s mouth and also that the fangs are grooved rather than hollow, it is generally regarded as of little danger to adults, although it could kill a child.


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