Snakes on a search for water are slipping into suburban toilets in Townsville in north Queensland.
Two carpet pythons have been pulled from the u-bends of surprised homeowners in the past two weeks.
Townsville volunteer snake catcher Elliot Budd was called to a house in Mount Stuart earlier this month after a tradesman working on a house found a three-metre python in a downstairs loo.
Mr Budd said when he received a call a week later from a woman with the same problem, he thought it was a joke.
“At first I thought it was a friend having a go at me but she was very serious about it,” he said.
“I went out and there was a snake curled up in the toilet.”
Mr Budd said the carpet python required some coaxing to come out.
“The first one I got in the toilet we actually had to unbolt the toilet to get it out because he just wasn’t budging,” he said.
“The second one, by the time I got there most of its body was already through the pipes and so I was only really holding onto it around its neck.
“You can’t pull it because you don’t want to injure the snake.
“Eventually … I loosened my grip a bit and he just started coming out on his own.”
The reptiles are not the only snakes found searching for water in North Queensland.
A group of volunteer snake catchers have shared their stories on social media.
Many have pulled pythons from wet places in recent weeks, such as from near kitchen sinks and down drain pipes.
James Cook University reptile expert Professor Lin Schwarzkopf said the lack of rain in Townsville was forcing the animals to be more creative to find their next drink.
“At the moment it’s the snake breeding season and so males are moving around anyway and while they’re moving around they’ll be losing water and so they may have a special need for water now,” Professor Schwarzkopf said.
“Over the next little while as it gets drier and drier – and we’re not expecting much of a wet season – I expect that you may find snakes in many more wet places than you usually do.”
Mr Budd said anyone who found a reptile in their toilet should call a snake handler immediately.
“In Townsville we have a good group of snake catchers … there’s about a dozen of us,” he said.
“Keep an eye on it and call a snake catcher and we’ll come out and get it for you.”