Boa Constrictor on the loose for over a week in East Haddam has returned home

Animals and Wildlife

EAST HADDAM, Conn. (WTNH) – There was an eight-and-a-half-foot boa constrictor on the loose in Connecticut in early September.

On Sept. 16, the snake’s owner, Rob Peach, posted on Facebook that Tessy the snake is home safe.

He thanked everyone “for your kind words, your time, and your energy. It is very much appreciated and will be remembered… I will be making some serious security improvements in her bedroom before letting her out of her tank again.”

Peach credits different area officers for assisting in her rescue.

On Sunday, Sept. 5, the snake was first spotted in East Haddam, slithering across Creek Row during a rainstorm.

In a video sent into News 8, you can hear a surprised man talking as he takes a video causing a lot of interest and concern in East Haddam. “That’s the middle of the road and that’s him,” the man said as he panned across the snake. “He almost makes it all the way over.”

This is certainly a first for the town. 

“The first person who saw it said ‘my god this must be something out of Africa,’” explained First Selectman Rob Smith (D-East Haddam).

It is, in fact, a Colombian red-tailed boa.

“I saw the picture and it was quite surprising, I guess,” said Dan Ballack whose family owns Ballak’s Garden Center.

His mom told him about the posting on social media which Rob Peach also saw. That’s how he realized his snake escaped from his house. He thought she had been hiding in a wall.

“She likes to climb and she sits in the sun with us,” said Peach as he looked through pictures of his snake on his phone. “She’s literally she’s part of the family.”

He says the 30-pound boa is strong but gentle.

“The snake’s name is ‘Tessy’ it’s short for Tesla,” said Peach who used to work for Tesla.

He believes the snake may have gotten out through a window.

“I’d just like to create some awareness that there is a big friendly snake out in the neighborhood and I don’t want anything bad to happen to her,” said Peach.

He says if you were to spot the snake during the day it may be sunning itself and it would be in a position with its head about a foot in the air and its mouth open. That may look menacing but he says it’s just the snake trying to gasp for air because it doesn’t do too well in the colder temperatures and it may have a stuffy nose.

He says people shouldn’t be worried. The snake only eats once every couple of weeks and it is well fed.  

“I’ve fallen asleep with her like literally around my neck and I’ve woke up so she’s a good girl,” Peach told News 8 on Sept. 8.

In his message on Facebook after Tessy was returned home, Peach said, “I also want to say to anyone who felt afraid or uneasy because there was a large snake on the loose, I am sorry if we caused you stress or fear. She was scared too, and I was scared for my pet, it wasn’t fun for anyone. I am so glad she is home…Keep an eye out for opportunities to meet Tessy in the future. I’m hoping we can have some fun educating people about big snakes, especially people who may be scared of them.”

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