LONDON (Reuters) - British police said on Monday they were hunting for thieves who broke into an apartment in northwest England and stole 38 Royal Python snakes.

The non-venomous snakes, which included eight pregnant females, were taken from a house in St Helens last week, police added. Two men were spotted leaving the scene carrying two sacks.

"This is a large collection of snakes that the victim had been gathering for a while," said Det. Con. Neil Henry of Merseyside Police.

According to a website for Royal Python keepers, www.theroyalpython.co.uk, the snakes grow to an average length of 4-5 feet (1.2-1.5 meters) and make great pets, as they have good temperaments and are easy to tame.

Police said the snakes were "extremely unlikely to pose any threat to the public".

(Reporting by Michael Holden; editing by Stephen Addison)