A 52-year-old mechanic who found a snake inside the car he was working on has spoken of his shock and disbelief.
Gordon Eikman was emptying the vehicle when he spotted something orange in the boot that he thought was a toy snake. He soon realised his mistake when it slithered off to hide from him.
"I was just emptying some stuff out of a car and I thought I saw a rubber snake," he said.
"But I looked and it was a real one. It made me jump back a bit, and it got a fright as well and escaped into the back panel of the car."
Mr Eikman believes the 3ft long snake, thought to be a rat snake and not poisonous, could have holed up in the black Citroen Xsara up to a month earlier, when the vehicle was impounded by police at the T&J Wallace garage in the village of Macmerry, East Lothian.
The mechanic, from North Berwick, had been clearing out the car in preparation for it to be wrecked when he saw the snake.
After discovering the creature, he called the Scottish SPCA and workers from the charity came out to the garage.
A hole was cut in the panel and the snake was taken away without a fight. It remains in the care of the Scottish SPCA.
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