Students were headed for a back-to-school surprise Tuesday morning after police discovered a one-metre-long snake in a school playground in Toronto's east end.

Responding to a call in the early morning hours at Port Royal Public School in Scarborough, police found the snake — believed to be a boa or bull constrictor — slithering in the school's playground.

Police captured the creature using a pillowcase borrowed from a nearby home before turning the serpent over to the care of the city’s animal services department.

The discovery was made hours before students were due to arrive for the first day of classes.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Deputy mayor of Campbellton Ian Comeau (left) holds a microphone for Rev. Claude Benoit as mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners react to six year old Ethan Levesque's words as they gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Deputy mayor of Campbellton, Ian Comeau, listens to six year old Ethan Levesque speak as mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Mourners gather in Campbellton, N.B. to remember Noah and Connor Barthe on Wednesday, August 7, 2013. The vigil opened with a moment of silence to pay respects to the boys, whose deaths have triggered an outpouring of global sympathy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John LeBlanc

  • Connor Barthe (left) and brother Noah.

  • Connor and Noah with their mother Mandy Trecartin.

  • With family snake Mr. Slithers, not the snake allegedly involved in the death of the two brothers.

  • Jean-Claude Savoie, owner of Reptile Ocean.