Woman’s Car Was Running Funny… Turns Out a Live Python Was in Her Engine

Written by Jennifer Geer
Updated: October 19, 2023
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Not only do you not expect to find a python slithering around in eastern Wisconsin, but you surely don’t expect to find one curled up inside your car’s engine. However, that’s just what happened to Ellen Chaudoir of Green Bay. Chaudoir was surprised to find a live python found hiding in her car.

The snake was a 7-foot-long Jungle Carpet Python that had somehow escaped from its owner. When Chaudoir opened the hood of her car, she found the snake peacefully curled up inside the engine.

Most likely, the escaped reptile was simply looking for a warm place to hang out. Animals can be attracted to car engine compartments in cold weather for warmth and shelter.

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Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary Curator of Animals Lori Bankson told local news reporters that she and a colleague, along with local animal control safety officers, removed the snake safely and that it’s currently being cared for at a rescue organization. Bankson suggests if you ever encounter a snake in your car engine, call your local animal control organization immediately and don’t try to start your car.

According to the Green Bay Municipal Code, a permit is needed to keep this type of snake. However, news reports state that no known permit is on file for a jungle carpet python in the area.

About the Jungle Carpet Python

jungle carpet python in tree

Most often, you’ll find a jungle carpet python in the trees, not in the hood of your car.

©Nagel Photography/Shutterstock.com

The jungle carpet python is a non-venomous snake native to a small area in northeastern Queensland, Australia. Like all reptiles, it is cold-blooded, which is probably why this python was seeking warmth by hiding inside a car.

Other subspecies of carpet pythons can be found in wider ranges throughout Australia and New Guinea. Females lay around 10 to 25 eggs at a time, which they guard until the eggs hatch. The hatchlings immediately begin taking care of themselves.

Although the snake has bright yellow and black patterns, which do not help them blend into a Wisconsin environment, it does help them camouflage in their native rain forests.

The snake is most often found in dense rainforests and along river basins. It can live for about 15 to 20 years in the wild, and up to 30 years in captivity. 

Do People Keep Jungle Carpet Pythons as Pets?

Because of their beautiful markings and hardy nature, they have become popular pets among reptile keepers. However, many localities may require special permits to keep the large snakes.

How Large Do Jungle Carpet Pythons Get?

These snakes can grow to about six to eight feet in length and may weigh as much as 30 pounds. Although some females have been known to grow as long as nine feet.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © fivespots/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Jennifer Geer is a writer at A-Z Animals where her primary focus is on animals, news topics, travel, and weather. Jennifer holds a Master's Degree from the University of Tulsa, and she has been researching and writing about news topics and animals for over four years. A resident of Illinois, Jennifer enjoys hiking, gardening, and caring for her three pugs.

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