Man Receives $1,500 Fine for Taking His Pet Snake Surfing

Man Receives $1,500 Fine for Taking His Pet Snake Surfing
Man Receives $1,500 Fine for Taking His Pet Snake Surfing (Photo: Reproduction/Instagram)

An Australian man has been fined $1,500 after a viral video showed him surfing with his pet snake.

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In the clip, Higor Fiuza is seen surfing with Shiva, a 3-year-old carpet python, at Rainbow Bay, in Australia. “She goes for a swim a little and then comes back to the board, just cruising waiting for a wave, for the perfect wave,” he told 9News.

As the video went viral on social media, it also caught the attention of wildlife authorities, who issued the $1,500 fine to Fiuza on Thursday.

Jonathan McDonald, senior wildlife officer at the Department of Environment and Science, stated that while Fiuza had the proper permit to care for the python, he did not have a special license to freely travel with the snake.

“We do not want permit holders to be displaying their native animals in public unless it is done for a specific approved purpose and in a way that best provides for the welfare of the animal, the safety of the public and complies with the relevant codes” he said in a statement.

“Taking native pets out in public can cause the animals unnecessary stress, and they can behave in an unpredictable way when they are removed from their enclosures,” McDonald added.

Fiuza had previously stated that he only brought the snake to the beach when she seemed to enjoy swimming in the water. He also mentioned that, although she tends to hiss when feeling uncomfortable, she did not do so during the surfing trips.

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