The Blue Zoo Aquarium inside the Mall of Louisiana shut down for the day Tuesday after a python named Cara escaped from its enclosure and couldn't be immediately found.
The St. George Fire Department about 10:20 a.m. received an urgent request for help finding the reptile, spokesman Eldon Ledoux said. Initially, the department said the entire mall was closed, but access was only restricted near the aquarium.
Cara isn't venomous, said Blue Zoo chief marketing officer Ronda Swanson, who went on to describe her as a "very sweet snake." The aquarium closed to guard against her being harmed somehow while loose.
"We want to protect the snake as best we can," Swanson said.
The Blue Zoo Aquarium of Baton Rouge opened this year in the mall, which is located off Interstate 10 near its intersection with Bluebonnet Boulevard. While they awaited updates, mall officials held reporters inside a toddler play area near the aquarium.