Friday, 19 April, 2019

An Everglades record: largest female python captured in Big Cypress

Scientists capture the biggest python ever found in US Pic courtesy Facebook@Big Cypress National Preserve
Cary Marshall | 08 April, 2019, 02:53

Teams working to keep the python population down have been tracking the males with radio transmitters in a bid to find breeding females.

A team of four researchers stood apart from one another, arms outstretched, clutching a giant python, and it takes a wide-angle lens just to capture the length of the beast they found in Big Cypress National Preserve in Florida's Everglades.

The python research done at Big Cypress is focused on controlling the invasive species, believed to have entered the area when pet snakes escaped from or were released from their homes, according to the preserve's website.

"The team not only removes the invasive snakes, but collects data for research, develop new removal tools, and learn how the pythons are using the Preserve", the park said in its post.

The record-breaking python outweighs a female captured in Big Cypress in December 2017 by snake hunter Jason Leon, which measured 17ft 1in and weighed 132lb, according to the Miami Herald.

More news: UK Conservatives slam Theresa May’s cross-party Brexit talks

The female python was over 17 feet long, weighed 140 pounds, and contained 73 developing eggs.

They also said the record-breaking python was snared after its position was given away by a boyfriend - a so-called Judas snake.

The Burmese python is native to Southeast Asia, but in recent decades the big snakes have become a slithering menace in Florida. In their native lands, the snakes commonly reach 18 feet and can exceed 20 feet.

Python hunters are said to have caught more than 1,850 of the snakes in the area after they started to wreak havoc on Florida's ecosystem.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission allows for Burmese pythons to be killed without a permit or hunting license.

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