Australian Surfer Fined $1,500 for Riding Waves with Pet Python at Gold Coast Beach

Higor Fiuza went viral after he filmed himself surfing with the snake earlier this month

<p> Chris Hyde/Getty </p> Surfers riding waves in Gold Coast, Australia

Chris Hyde/Getty

Surfers riding waves in Gold Coast, Australia

An Australian surfer has received a $1,500 fine for surfing with his pet python.

Higor Fiuza went viral on social media earlier this month after he filmed himself bringing a carpet python named Shiva into the water at a Gold Coast beach in Queensland, Australia.

Queensland's Department of Environment and Science has now fined the surfer for breaching terms of his permit to keep the snake. This comes after wildlife protection officers were warned of his unsanctioned public appearances with the python, BBC News reported.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

<p>9 News</p> Australian Surfer riding waves with his pet python

9 News

Australian Surfer riding waves with his pet python

The department is also investigating Fiuza and the carpet python, which is native to Australia, over concerns for the reptile's well-being, following the surfer’s recent social media content.

"The man was brought to our attention when he appeared in local media taking his python into the surf," senior wildlife officer Jonathan McDonald said in a media release.

The officer said that permit holders should only bring their animals out in public for an "approved purpose" and in a way "that best provides for the welfare of the animal, the safety of the public and complies with the relevant codes."

Related: Snake Found Hanging Behind Picture Frame in Australian Home: 'Nice Little Carpet Python'

"Snakes are obviously cold-blooded animals, and while they can swim, reptiles generally avoid water," McDonald said. "The python would have found the water to be extremely cold, and the only snakes that should be in the ocean are sea snakes."

According to CNN affiliate Nine News, Fiuza often surfs with Shiva at beaches in the Gold Coast area, wrapping the python around his neck or dangling her from his surfboard.

"She goes for a swim a little bit and then comes back to the board. She’s just cruising, waiting for a wave — for the perfect wave," Fiuza said. "I go under the water and come up and she’s just there. Never put out my hand to save her or anything."

Related: Man Dies, Another Found Floating Face Down in Separate Incidents at Fla. Beach Over an Hour Apart

In another interview, the surfer also revealed that he has surfed with the carpet python — which is non-venomous and can grow up to 13 feet long — at least 10 times.

"I always took her to the beach and she loved to be in the water swimming. So, one day I decided to take her out for a surf and she loved it," Fiuza told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

"Usually when she doesn't like something she starts hissing. But she doesn't hiss [in the water], she is always chill," he continued.

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.