A snake native to Africa has been removed from a suburban Chicago nature preserve after a visitor found the reptile coiled beneath her car.
The ball python was removed Wednesday from the Herrick Lake Forest Preserve in Wheaton after a woman who had been walking at the preserve noticed a large snake under her car and called police.
Sgt. Krist Schroeder, an officer with the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, responded to the scene and removed the snake from the area, a spokesperson for the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County told NBC 5.
Authorities said they suspect someone released the snake as an unwanted pet. They believe it was lying on the asphalt to warm its body temperature up.
The department said in a statement it is a "reminder not to release your pets or wildlife into the forest preserves."
"It’s likely they won’t survive and illegal," the statement read.
The snake was taken to DuPage County Animal Control, officials said.
The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County manages 60 forest preserves that encompass nearly 26,000 acres (10,522 hectares).