Snake On A Qantas Plane Grounds International Flight in Australia Overnight

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht
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A Qantas flight to Japan was stranded overnight in Australia, after staff found a Mandarin rat snake in the cabin of the Boeing 747.

The flight’s 370 passenger had to stay overnight in Sydney, the airline said Monday. They were all sent out Monday morning on a replacement flight to Tokyo.

The snake is nonvenomous and posed no threat to humans. However it’s unclear just how the 8-inch snake, which was only the width of a pencil, got onto the inbound flight from Singapore.

Australia’s Department of Agriculture confiscated the animal and killed it so that it could not introduce non-native reptiles or disease into the country.

The Agriculture Department said it “was looking into how the snake came to be on the plane, but isn’t able to speculate at this time.”

This isn’t the first time a snake rode Qantas this year. In January a scrub python was found on the wing of a plane, which flew from Cairns, Australia, to Papua New Guinea. The python died during the flight.

Sources: Globe and Mail, BBC News