NOBLESVILLE, Ind. - It's slithering somewhere in a Noblesville neighborhood, and Hamilton County animal control is asking neighbors to be on the lookout for a missing 8-foot-long boa constrictor.
It was Labor Day. The snake’s owner had her outside to sun. He says he turned his head for just a moment, and she was gone.
Now, coming outside and parting the tall grasses has become an hourly ritual for Scott Bolinger.
"I have some neighbors who are pretty freaked out about her,” Bolinger said. “I want to keep them safe and make sure they feel at ease."
For days, he's been looking for his 8-foot-long Columbian Red Tail boa constrictor named “Rainbow.”
"I'm worried about her,” Bolinger said. “I've had her for five years; she's part of my family."
The snake's escape has nervous neighbors constantly driving by, asking the same question: if the reptile has been found yet.
Bolinger said Rainbow had just eaten a huge meal: an entire rabbit. So, he said, she shouldn't be hunting for weeks.
"There's not much of a search. I think finding it anymore will be luck,” Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Tom Rogers said. “They camouflage extremely well."
Deputy Rogers said they can only wait now for the cold-blooded critter to come out to sun, and for somebody to see it.
He says the snake sounds scarier than it is.
"Everybody looks at it and says, 'Gee, it's a boa constrictor! They're from Columbia or South America.’ But our black snakes, rat snakes, corn snakes, all of the non-venomous snakes in the state of Indiana, are all constrictors; that's how they kill their prey. So they're actually no different,” Deputy Rogers said. “And an 8-foot snake is no different than a 6-foot rat snake or an 8-foot black snake in the state of Indiana."
If you see the boa constrictor, the most important thing is: Don't touch it yourself. Instead, call the Hamilton County non-emergency dispatch line or call 911.
Rogers also said you don't have to worry about out-running the snake, because people can walk faster than boas can move.
Bolinger said if he does get the snake back, he will likely take her outside to stretch and sun again, but he won't take his eyes off her next time.