A man who says he lives in Tennessee has a claim that Tennessee’s only zoo has snakes.
Zoo officials told The Tennessean they have no record of the snake being there, and he’s asking for the zoo to reopen as soon as possible.
The zoo is at 8201 Westgate Drive in Tennessee.
The Tennessee Department of Health said Monday that it has not been able to locate the animal and the man claims to be a zoo expert.
He says the snake was not the same animal he’s seen in Tennessee since 2010.
The man says he was looking for a snake at a Tennessee State Fair and was in the process of picking it up when he came across a white python on the ground.
The snake, the man said, was about a foot long, but it was too large to carry and it was a different species.
He’s not sure why the snake had escaped.
The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said in a statement Monday that the snake is a male and was not present when the man saw it.
“It’s an extremely rare species that was not previously known to exist in Tennessee,” the department said.
It’s the second time in as many years that someone has claimed to be the man who found the snake, according to the AP.
Last year, a man named David Zito was arrested after police said he found a dead snake near a pond near the Tennessee Zoo.
The Tennessee Zoo has been under the management of the Tennessee Department for several years.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.