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Reptile training for Long Island law enforcement

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NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Law enforcement on Long Island are getting some trained on handling reptiles, many exotic and some poisonous.

In September, Suffolk cops and SPCA officers uncovered 850 snakes, including Burmese pythons, in a home in Shirley, part of an illegal reptile business.

Also, 19 alligators have turned up around Long Island in the last year or so. As online sales for exotic animals thrive officers are finding themselves up against snapping turtles and aggressive tegu lizards.

During Friday's training, a nonvenomous snake bit an officer.

Suffolk County SPCA Chief Roy Goss says he has seen a rash of abandoned reptiles, many illegal, in the area because they are so cheap and easy to buy online.

Goss's advice to the public is: don't get illegal reptiles. He said to stay away from them and to call the Suffolk SPCA or 911 if you come into contact with an exotic reptile.

Handling animals like these is becoming part of the job description for Suffolk County law enforcement.

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