WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- The stunning picture of a 17-foot and 140-pound python was posted on Facebook by researchers who captured it in the Everglades; this is by far the biggest ever captured in the area.
- Found in the python were 73 developing eggs which were immediately destroyed while the snake was humanely put to death.
- As a means to control invasive species, the team searched breeding grounds through radio transmitters installed on male pythons where females are removed once located.
The largest python ever captured at Big Cypress National Preserve in the Everglades set a new record in the area. The amazing photo of the 17-foot snake which took four people to hold it was posted on the Big Cypress Facebook page by a team of researchers.
According to Rita Garcia, spokeswoman for the Preserve, the python which weighed 140 pounds with 73 developing eggs found in it was caught as a result of a research on the approaches to finding pythons. While the eggs were destroyed, the snake was euthanized.
Similarly, a 17-foot python weighing 132 pounds was also caught in the Everglades in 2017. Some pythons can grow as much as 20 feet.
Radio transmitters are placed on male pythons which are then used by researchers to track down breeding grounds. As a means of controlling invasive species, the females are removed once they are located.
According to the National Park Services, invasive species are defined as “having the ability to thrive and spread aggressively outside their natural range.” An example of these is the Burmese python which was introduced to Florida through pets that have either been released or have escaped. They are now a presence in the Preserve where they usually feed on native wildlife.
Aside from working to removing pythons from Big Cypress, how the snakes use the area is being studied as well by researchers.
In a statement, the Resource Management staff at Big Cypress expressed their gratitude to all the divisions of the Preserve that have supported the python program.
“Their support along with the tireless efforts of our partners at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), have allowed us to locate and remove several breeding female pythons over the past few months,” said Big Cypress.
Pythons are native to Southeast Asia, Africa and Central and South America.
Source: Fox News