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May 1, 2012 at 6:00 AM
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Snake spends weekend as uninvited guest

RIVERSIDE, Calif., May 1 (UPI) -- A California couple said they had trouble sleeping for a couple nights when their dog chased a red racer snake into the house and the reptile went into hiding.

Mike and Tracy Mandelbaum, who live in a ranch-style house in the Moreno Valley in Riverside County, said their dog chased the 3-foot non-venomous reptile into the house Friday afternoon and they were unable to locate it until Sunday, The (Riverside, Calif.) Press-Enterprise reported Monday.

The couple said they had trouble sleeping with the snake in the house, especially after talking to their son.

"Yeah, Mr. Nature," Mike Mandelbaum said. "He tells Tracy that she's lucky it didn't crawl into bed and wrap itself around her legs to keep warm. Thanks a lot."

The Mandelbaums said they found the snake Sunday behind a computer desk and a Riverside County animal control officer soon arrived to cart the reptile away.

Authorities said the snake was released back into the wild.

Fox walks off with boules balls

PEBURTHE, France, May 1 (UPI) -- A French boules player whose balls kept disappearing from his private pitch said an infrared camera identified the thief -- a fox.

Patrick Cazes, an amateur player of petanque, a form of the bocce-like sport boules, said 38 balls disappeared from his private pitch in the southern village of Peburthe between February and March, The reported Monday.

Cazes said he initially thought children were behind the theft and installed an infrared camera to catch them red-handed, but he was surprised to find the camera instead recorded a fox walking away with his sporting goods.

Cazes said he was surprised to see the fox so interested in the balls while ignoring a nearby henhouse.

Woman arrested after soccer match brawl

NORRBY, Sweden, May 1 (UPI) -- Police in Sweden said a woman was arrested on charges of attacking six people following a brawl at a boys' soccer game.

Boras police said a fight broke out between the two teams after a heavy tackle during the game Sunday in Norrby and the brawl soon spread to include the spectators, The Local reported Monday.

Police said several people were detained and a woman, who was reported to be in her 40s and a relative of one soccer player, was arrested.

"She allegedly hit six people," police spokesman Johan Novenius said.

Mo. city tosses chicken legislation

BALLWIN, Mo., May 1 (UPI) -- Residents of a Missouri city said they were disappointed when officials refused to further consider draft legislation to allow the keeping of backyard chickens.

Michael Coggin, who brought the Ballwin Board of Aldermen a petition from his neighbors in favor of legalizing the keeping of the birds in city backyards, said he was disappointed when only Alderman Mark Harder voted in favor of continuing the discussion at the April 23 board meeting, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Monday.

"I see the rise of gardening and being able to grow your own food in urban and suburban areas as not just a trend, but one of the results of rising food and fuel prices," Coggin said. "Raising hens is a direct extension of some of the changes that have been taking place in people's mind set towards growing their own food."

Aldermen said the majority of residents they heard from on the issue were opposed to keeping chickens inside the city.

"There is zero interest in chickens in Ballwin, and I feel that's the overwhelming sentiment of most in the city," Alderman Frank Fleming said.

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