Five snakes invaded a county courthouse in Hinds County, Mississippi. Clerks discovered the snakes slithering around in their basement file room.
Hinds County Clerks found the snakes in and around a shelving unit, which contains court files. In two weeks, the courthouse employees have found a total of five snakes in their basement office.
As reported by WAPT News, two of the snakes were smashed by the shelving unit. A few others were caught on adhesive traps. Snake educator Percy King discussed the issue with the court employees, explaining that as the weather warms, snakes are coming out of hibernation. King states that as the snakes wake up, they are likely searching for food.
The county court clerks weren’t exactly calmed by King’s explanation. Hinds County Circuit Clerk, Barbara Dunn, states that she is “personally scared to death of a snake.” Deputy Clerk Kelly Phillips states that “when you’re in your workplace and something slides across the floor, it’s not exactly comforting.”
As reported by the Clarion Ledger, the snakes were actually quite small. Phillips described them as the size of an “overgrown earthworm.”
King identified the snakes that invaded the county courthouse as DeKay’s Snakes, more commonly known as Earth Snakes, or Brown Snakes. They are not venomous.
As discussed by ENature.com, Brown Snakes are small snakes that vary in color from brown to gray. They have a stripe and small spots along their spine, and their belly is usually a lighter color.
The snakes’ main diet consists of snails, slugs, and worms. Brown snakes are nocturnal and usually hide in dark damp places. The courthouse basement may have seemed like the perfect hiding spot for the snakes.
Court employees have not found any more snakes, and they hope it is an isolated incident. They never expected snakes to invade the county courthouse.
[Image via Flickr]