JUPITER, Fla. - A woman has been cited after police and wildlife officials say they found about a 100 dead ball pythons in a feces-filled house in Jupiter.
The discovery was made in mid-February during a welfare check by police at a home on Timberline Drive.
The floors were covered in dog feces and urine, bird cages filthy with feces, and 30 to 40 plastic bins were stacked one on top of the other contained dead ball python snakes. These are the conditions Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers found inside Jennifer Morrison's Jupiter home.
"They had to come back and almost dress up in hazmat suits to go back in," said Rob Long, a neighbor.
Long lives next door to the home on Timberline Drive in Jupiter. Had he not seen it with his own eyes, he would never known there 100 dead snakes inside his neighbor's house.
"It's just heartbreaking. I mean if she needed help, I'm sure there were a lot of people that would have helped her out," said Long.
Animal Care and Control was called out to the home when police responded to do a welfare check on Morrison. She was cited with animal abandonment. The big question is how was she able to down and have 100 snakes in her home?
FWC says anyone can buy or own a ball python. Reptile experts say it's not unusual for people to have dozens of them in their home, but there is a proper way to house and care for them.
"This is a life. This is not a piece of machinery or you know something that sits on the shelf doesn't require maintenance," said Aaron Joyce, owner of Wild Cargo Pets in West Palm Beach.
Joyce says ball pythons are extremely common pets for snake lovers and are easy to care for.
"These animals were voiceless that were dying in deplorable conditions, that's a shame," said Joyce.
He says people drop off ball pythons all the time when they can't care for them. He feels there's no excuse for snakes to starve and rot in bins.
"If it was a cat or a dog situation, that would make front line news," added Joyce.
Two dogs, two red-foot tortoises, two parakeets and two ball pythons were discovered alive in the home, the wildlife officer said.
The owner was cited on March 13 for animal abandonment, a second degree misdemeanor, and given an April 12th court date.