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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 August, 2004, 14:32 GMT 15:32 UK
Python slithers into attraction
Burmese python
The Burmese python's diet will include mice, rats and rabbits
A baby Burmese python has become the latest attraction at Edinburgh's Butterfly and Insect World after its parents survived a health scare.

The snake, which has not yet been named, is the first to hatch out of 24 eggs laid by its mother, San Suu.

San Suu and her partner Tamu were seriously ill when they arrived at the centre and experts did not expect them to survive.

But they are fit enough to breed after receiving a clean bill of health.

The snake, which is only 16 inches long, is expected to grow to about 24ft within four years and weigh 12 stones.

It will be fed a diet of small mice, rats and rabbits.

Full health

Experts have not yet determined the sex of the snake and will name it in the coming weeks.

Butterfly World's resident herpetologist Ryan Devaney said he was delighted the snakes were in better shape.

He said: "The clutch of eggs was the first from resident parents Tamu and San Suu, both of whom are rescued animals and arrived at the centre in a very poor state of health.

"We are all therefore very proud to see that they are finally fit enough to breed as we have put in years of hard work to bring them back to full health.

"Hopefully the little python should shed its skin in the next few days and will tuck into its first meal shortly afterwards."


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