Quelle surprise!

A customs dog recently sniffed out an impressive -- but illegal -- trouser snake in Paris.

Published March 31, 2000 5:00PM (EST)

Is that a snake in your pocket?

According to a BBC report, a customs dog at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport was recently "taken by surprise" upon sniffing out the contents of a traveler's trousers. It turns out the unusually large lump in the 30-year-old man's pants wasn't one of the usual suspects -- pistol, penis or pot -- but a squirming, 16-inch boa constrictor.

The smuggler, a French citizen who was returning home from Bogota, Colombia, tried to explain to confounded customs officials that he wanted to add the snake to his reptile collection.

Boa constrictors are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, and the jet-lagged snake was immediately taken into custody by airport officials.

The BBC noted that snakes are coldblooded and need to be kept warm, but added that putting them "inside underwear is not normally recommended."

By J.A. Getzlaff

J.A. Getzlaff's Daily Planet appears every weekday. Do you have a tip or tale for J.A.? Send it to DailyPlanet@salon.com.

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