Erika well deserves the Reptile Rescue Angel title for 2010 as she went well beyond her comfort zone. Two days before we were leaving for our last fair we get a call from authorities saying they had just “acquired” a number of reptiles and insects that needed to go to a qualified rescue as the owners were in jail, arrested on drug charges.
OMGosh, we get there and find a beautiful large Albino Python with terrible acid burns from sitting in a filthy cage, a boa constrictor on the thin side, geckos, bearded dragons, again thin, a tarantula and scorpion.
While getting breakables out of the scorpions cage for transporting, a key was found that was obviously hidden in an old style 35mm film case…
On the way back, knowing we couldn’t take the python with us we were panicking as to what to do as it needed immediate and sustained care for the burns.
This is where you let your fingers do the walking through your phone’s contact list. One of the first things a reptile rescuer must liearn is persistence and to get used to such phrases as …no…no way…your kidding, right…sorry, I’m leaving town…I don’t do snakes, let alone large ones…I have to work…my dog or cat doesn’t like snakes…, etc, etc. LOL.
Finally got to Erika expecting another resounding no and lo and behold, it was a “YES”. Erika did a magnificent job of bathing her every day, keeping clean towels in the cage and even fed her after a few days. Due to her will to survive Erika named her “Fearless“, which we’ve kept as it’s very fitting. There’s more to Erika’s story beyond the python sitting as a first time reptile rescuer…and yes, first time!!!
A few days later we got a call fro the albino corn snake which she’s holding in the picture. Called and sure enough she was able to pick it up and thankfully it came with a nice cage and set-up. We got another “Gator 911 call” to which every owner thinks they have the “original” story as to why they can’t keep the alligator…!!!
Gave Erika a call and Bless her Heart, she was even up for gator wrangling. It’s amazing the number of people we run into that just purchased a baby gator. Like to think we have a sense of humor so give them our contact info and say you’re going to need our services in…”one foot or one bite”, ….whichever comes first. Usually it’s the bite!
Forgot to mention, in amongst Erika caring for the python and picking up animals, she was also a full-time university student!