Security screeners spotted a scaly surprise while scanning a suitcase: a 4-foot-long boa constrictor making its way through an X-ray machine at Tampa International Airport.
In an Instagram post on Friday, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said security officers found the snake curled up inside a carry-on bag in December.
The passenger told officers the boa was her “emotional support pet,” a TSA spokesperson said. The agency checked with her airline, who confirmed the snake would not be allowed on the plane while loose inside a suitcase.
It would not have been the first time a snake found its way onto a flight from Tampa. In October, a garter snake startled fliers on a plane from Tampa to Newark, New Jersey, when it slithered out of a carry-on bag.
TSA said no airlines allow snakes in carry-on luggage. However, a few airlines allow snakes in checked luggage if they are packaged correctly.