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Posted by W von Papinešu on September 03, 2002 at 09:44:58:
DAILY POST (Liverpoole, UK) 31 August 02 Lizard gets journey from Italy well taped (Rachel Newton)
A lizard is being nursed back to health after surviving a two-week journey from Italy to Cheshire trapped inside a container of pasta sauce.
The common wall lizard was discovered by staff at a grocery firm in Nantwich when they unwrapped the crate containing jars of bolognese sauce.
The three-inch long creature was stuck to packaging tape and was barely alive.
The shocked workers at Boughey Distribution in Wardle immediately contacted the RSPCA Stapeley Grange Wildlife Hospital, which is just round the corner.
Fortunately vet Hannah Bould, who has a particular interest in exotic animals, was on duty and recognised the lizard needed urgent treatment.
She said: "The lizard was extremely thin and dehydrated. I was told the container had been sealed for up to two weeks so it had been trapped for a long time.
"Lizards can survive for a while without food or water but I think this one was found in the nick of time.
"It was unable to move for the entire journey because it was stuck fast to the tape.
The lizard, named Vialli after the Italian football player Gianluca Vialli, is now being cared for at Hannah's home where she is treating it with fluids and minerals.
The creature seems to be making a good recovery although it is suspected of being blind in one eye.
Once back to good health, the lizard will find a new home in the reptile unit of St Helens College where Hannah also works.
RSPCA spokesman Kevin Hegarty said: "Often people who discover a stowaway creature ring the RSPCA but we are generally not equipped to deal with exotic animals and would advise people to trap it in a jar and contact Customs and Excise instead."
THE SENTINEL (Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, UK) 31 August 02 Pasta Lizard Saved
A stowaway lizard is recovering after a two-week overland journey to South Cheshire trapped without food or water in a shipment of pasta.
Workers at Boughey Distribution at Wardle, near Nantwich, were amazed to find the three-inch common wall lizard still alive after being stuck to packaging tape in a crate of jars of bolognese sauce.
Now called Vialli, after ex-Chelsea star Gianlica Vialli, it is on the mend at the RSPCA' s nearby Stapeley Grange Wildlife Hospital after staff contacted the society for advice.
Veterinary officer Hannah Bould, who has a particular interest in exotic animals, decided the lizard was in need of urgent treatment.
She said: "Lizards can survive for a while without food or water but I think this one was found in the nick of time."