The GRUMACanarian Police Environment Group on Gran Canaria seized a specimen of the species Lampropeltis Californiae last week, commonly known as the California King Snake (Culebra Real de California in Spanish), a species included in the Spanish Register of Invasive Exotic Species, which was being offered for sale through the internet.
After having obtained the warrant for the infringement the snake was deposited at the headquarters of the government environment department GESPLAN, by specialised personnel.
The California King snake, a native to southern United States, has seen a wild population explosion on Gran Canaria because of suspected escapes or intentional release in to the natural environment, where it has adapted perfectly, without any natural predators and abundant prey. Although not poisonous, it is recommended they not be handled, but if located their location should be reported on the main emergency and security response telephone number 112.
Possession, transport or tenure of any species included in the Spanish Register of Invasive Alien Species is prohibited, with penalties stipulated for very serious or serious infractions, ranging from 3,001 to 200,000 euros, according to Royal Decree 630/2013, of 2 August.
There is an app called Lampropeltis you can download from Google play or the Apple store. http://www.lifelampropeltis.es/index.php/colabora or by directly contacting local government authorities (CECOPIN) Telephone +34 (928) 353 443
If you spot a snake in the north easter regions of Telde, Valsequillo, Santa Brígida or San Mateo you can also contact the project by calling mobile number +34 608 098 296 or if the sighting was made near Gáldar, call +34 645 041 733.