Florida runner encounters a scary surprise during recent trail run

A Florida runner encountered a rather scary surprise on a recent run when they mistook a certain reptile for a tree branch.

On a recent park run, a Florida runner encountered a surprise visitor that could double as a runner’s nightmare.

At Robinson Preserve Park in Bradenton, Fla., a runner figured there was a fallen tree branch on the trail ahead, Fox 13 News reported.

Upon closer inspection, the runner noticed it was a 100-pound boa constrictor, with this particular large-bodied snake relatively tame, indicative of being a pet, according to park officials.

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The runner, who was not hurt during the encounter, immediately notified officials upon discovering the eerily-shaped tree branch.

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Wildlife Inc., an education and rehabilitation centre, was alerted and two park officials were sent to handle the snake, identified as a red-tailed boa.

“It is the first time we’ve got a call for a boa constrictor this large,” Damien Hurd, vice president of Wildlife Inc., told Channel 8 News.

The 100-pound snake is thought to have escaped from a nearby home in the city located on the western coast of Florida, just south of Tampa.

The Bradenton Herald noted that the species is invasive but is common as a house pet.