Reptiles, They’re Not Just For Government Anymore!

May 19, 2008 by

The latest fad in biological pollution comes to us via Florida pet owners who let their snakes loose in the wild (via Discovery News):

Giant pythons capable of swallowing a dog and even an alligator are rapidly making south Florida their home, potentially threatening other southeastern states, a study said.

“Pythons are likely to colonize anywhere alligators live, including north Florida, Georgia and Louisiana,” said Frank Mazzotti, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences professor, in his two-year study.

The pythons thriving in Florida are mostly Burmese pythons from Myanmar that were brought over as pets and then turned loose in the wild.

From 2002-2005, 201 of the beasts were caught by state authorities, but in the last two years the number has more than doubled to 418, Mazzotti said in his study published on the university Web site.

The largest python caught so far in Florida measured 16.4 feet and weighed 154 pounds.

Now is it just me, or do my fellow New Orleanians experience a moment of dread envisioning what would happen if they made it this far while the city continues to rot in so many areas? Other than the occasional cottonmouth we are used to seeing our snakes done up in suits doing their best impression of Kaa from the Disney version of the Jungle Book. (Picture Ray Nagin or Bill Jefferson with big googly eyes singing “trust in meeee…”)

I had a room mate once who kept a 14 ft python named Hamlet, I am well aware from personal experience just how big that actually is when you are face to face with it (and I am NOT a ophidiophobe). That is most definetly not something I wish to see roaming through the vermin rich refuse that so many of our neighborhoods have become.

Of course this is the point in election season when reptiles gravitate to Florida….

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