Missing snake found, but questions remain

August 16, 2008 1:40:50 PM PDT
An African Bush Viper that had been missing from its exhibit at Moody Gardens has been returned, but plenty of questions remain as to where the snake was. Late Friday evening, the viper, which had been missing since back on August 8, was left at a back door entrance to the visitor center.

Galveston Police and Moody Gardens officials request that anyone with information about the disappearance or return of the snake to come forward.

"There is a criminal investigation going on," said Galveston Police Chief Charles Wiley. "The public should contact Crime Stoppers or Galveston Police Department if they have information on this matter."

It's been determined that the locks on exhibit that housed the snake had been tampered with.

The African Bush Viper resides in a highly secured exhibit with two other Bush Vipers and three Gaboon Vipers. Staff became aware of the disappearance on August 8 when the biologist's routine morning inventory accounted for five snakes.

The same snake disappeared from its exhibit on July 8. After that disappearance, the snake was found above the exhibit area.

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