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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS

This Noah's Ark Carries One Species

November 27, 1998|MIKE BRESNAHAN | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Noah Reeder has seven slimy friends.

He hangs out with them, mostly at his parents' home, and twice a month even springs for their favorite lunch:

Rats.

His pals are boa constrictors.

Reeder, tight end for the Notre Dame High football team and proud reptile owner, became interested in snakes two years ago when he met a friend of his sister who bred boa constrictors.

Reeder convinced his parents that he could handle a pet snake and, after proving himself correct, was allowed to acquire more of them.

As a birthday present last year, his parents, Philip and Carol, helped Reeder pay $1,500 for four rare laudicauda snakes from Peru.

But his parents weren't too pleased when two snakes got out of their cage and were loose in the house.

After a long and arduous search, the renegade snakes were found hiding inside the false bottom of a desk.

"[My parents] were screaming at me," Reeder said. "But they got over it."

Five of the snakes live in a 28-square-foot terrarium that Reeder created with the frame of a bunk bed.

"It's my pride and joy," said Reeder, who equipped the terrarium with a heating pad and fluorescent and flood lights.

Being a snake charmer has its price, however. Reeder spends more than $50 a month on their food. Some of the snakes may be on their way out.

"Maybe after football season's over, I'm going to get rid of a couple of them," he said.

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