It's been a seriously weird week for animal-related news stories.

First we had hungry, rogue goats in suburban Idaho, and now we have a voracious reptile on the streets of Leytonstone, East London.

Unsuspecting passer-by Rachel Garland happened to stop at exactly the right moment, filming the snake coiling itself around an already dead pigeon and appearing to eat it.

The Evening Standardreports that onlookers had given the deceased pigeon to the snake, and that no hunting had taken place.

The RSPCA was quickly called to the bizarre scene; a spokeswoman later confirmed that numerous other reptiles had recently been abandoned, describing the problem as "widespread".

Speaking to the Press Association, RSPCA inspector Rebecca Benson explained:

I’m very keen to find out how he came to be in such a dangerous situation.

Exposed like that on a street could have meant anything might have happened to him – he could have been run over by a car or attacked by another animal.

It might be that he is an escaped pet or, more worryingly, someone may have deliberately dumped him and left him to fend for himself.

The snake is currently being held, and will soon be rehoused.

The RSPCA is calling on anyone with more information to call the inspector's appeal line on 0300 128 8018.

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