Ruby was found dead on the balcony one evening recently. She had been in perfect health prior to this and had no visible wounds. My theory is that she was attacked by a (comparatively) small python, who was probably after one of her babies, and ended up strangled, but the python had been unable to swallow her. Apparently pythons sometimes do this.
I know this isn't a common thing, but her fur looked heavily compressed in a ring around her upper chest, and there were other less heavy indentations lower down which were consistent with a snake wrapping itself around her three times. These indentations were the only unusual thing about her body and it's difficult to account for them otherwise.
Here is one of the very last photos of Ruby.
|Ruby with Niva back-riding - 23rd Feb 2017
The good news is that her babies, Nebo and Niva, survived this incident. Their older brother Koji, and father Wasabi, immediately took over the role of caring for them. This was a very interesting thing to witness.