Florida Python Challenge Has Only Yielded 21 Kills So Far
The great python challenge in the Florida Everglades is well underway, and finding those slithering creatures has been harder than many amateurs may have guessed. As of Friday, only 21 snakes have been killed in the contest hosted by The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. That number seems especially small when lined up with the fact that over 1,000 people have signed up to hunt pythons during the tenure of the contest, which runs through February 10.
No one knows exactly how many of the invasive Burmese pythons live in Floridaís Everglades, but in many places, the pythons have capably and systematically eaten their way through many of the native animal populations, including animals as varied as rabbits and bobcats, among others. Pythons get hungry easily and can consume many times their body weight. Florida wants the creatures out, but it may be harder than one would think.
According to the The AP, one licensed hunting guide named Alligator Ron has taken down one python a year for the last several years, but since the hunt began the man has had no luck. There are still several weeks of the contest left to take down those suckers, and as the news outlet notes, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission can still learn plenty of important facts about the pythons as they are brought in, even if the species isnít close to being fully eradicated, especially since the commission doesn't even have a fully detailed list of all of the types of animals the snakes are willing to eat, yet.
Photo Credit @ Pat Lynch - South Florida Water Management District