Tenant leaves behind 19 tarantulas and python after quitting apartment

A tenant in Maine left behind an unusual surprise for their former landlord when they quit their apartment earlier this week and left behind 19 tarantulas and a ball python.

The landlord in Auburn, Maine discovered the animals in the apartment. Fifteen of the spiders were living but four were dead and the python had been left without water.

Following the discovery, the landlord called on Drew Desjardins, who runs Mr. Drew and His Animals Too!, an educational outreach program and animal rescue, on Wednesday.

Desjardins was able to bring the animals to his home, where he frequently brings rescued animals. He rescues animals in the local area and also rehabilitates them and rehomes them.

He uses animals in educational shows and pays visits to schools, camps, churches and other venues.

The animals in question are actually illegal in Maine and DesJardins will have to relocate them elsewhere. He posted about the unusual find on Facebook on Wednesday.

“Received a phone call from a nervous landlord today about some abandoned animals in an apartment in Auburn. 19 tarantulas (4 dead) and all are illegal in Maine and a ball python that had no water. All are doing well now. Never a dull moment in my world,” he wrote.

It’s not clear exactly how large the ball python DesJardins rescued was, but the species can get up to four or five feet in length. The term “ball” refers to their tendency to curl into a ball when stressed or frightened.

He later posted a photo of the python curled up in a tub with the comment: “Happy to have water again.”

The tarantulas are also illegal in Maine without a permit and DesJardins said they are in fact, delicate creatures.

“The movies show them as being these indestructible creatures that will just come at you if you step on them and jump on people and attack them and run after you and that’s not true,” he told WGME.

“Very shy and delicate. If I took out this tarantula right now and dropped it on the ground, it’s going to break like an egg and die,” DesJardins said.

As DesJardins points out on his Facebook page, he only takes in exotic animals, not cats or dogs, zoo or circus animals or farmyard animals.

“I will work with these animals and care for their needs and use them in my outreach programs after they are well socialized. Currently I have over 100 animals in my care and there seems to be no end to the need [for] care,” the page says.

Snake breeder Ken Gubersky of Canada holds a ball python for visitors to see, at the Hong Kong International Reptile Expo on July 17, 2010. A tenant in Maine left behind a ball python and 15 living tarantulas in their apartment.
Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images

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