Imagine waking up and finding a 7-foot boa constrictor wrapped around the deck at the back of your house.
That was the case this morning for Paul and Camille Kiolbasa of Stillwater, Minn.
Paul Kiolbasa stepped onto the deck about 5 a.m. and thought he was seeing a wet towel or a stick. As soon as he touched it, he knew it was a snake, Camille Kiolbasa said.
"He could not believe what he was seeing," said Kiolbasa, development director for St. Croix Catholic School. "He came and woke me up and said: 'There's a python on our deck.' I said, 'This is not funny.' He said, 'I am not kidding. You've got to come see it.' I could not believe what I was seeing."
Linda Thompson, police dispatcher, said the snake had "made itself quite comfortable. It is wrapped around the wood on their deck and partially on their deck steps."
Sarah Richard, adoption chairwoman for the Minnesota Herpetological Society, was called to the scene and was able to remove the reptile.
Richard put the boa constrictor in a cotton bag and took it to an undisclosed location. Richard said she expects the owner will not come forward to claim the snake and said it would likely be adopted within the society.
The society takes in and adopts out 200 to 300 unwanted or lost animals each year, Richard said. About 25 percent of those are found strays.
Richard said loose reptiles aren't much of a problem in Minnesota "because they disappear in October."
The Kiolbasas have three children and three pets -- a daschund and two outdoor cats.
"We were actually very worried about the cats," Camille Kiolbasa said. "We were very happy when we counted two cats."
Mary Divine can be reached at 651-228-5443. Follow her at twitter.com/MaryEDivine.