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As if killer bees and kudzu weren't enough, the southern United States may soon have another invasive species to contend with — giant Burmese pythons capable of swallowing deer and alligators whole.
Approximately 30,000 of the big snakes, which can reach 30 feet and 200 pounds, already live wild in Florida's Everglades, thanks to thick-headed pet owners who've released them into the swamps when they've grown too large to keep at home.
But now the U.S. Geological Survey says Florida is not the only place the Burmese python can thrive.
In fact, the big beasts, which are not poisonous and rarely attack humans, could live happily in the entire southern third of the country, from Southern California to Texas and the Lower Mississippi Valley and up the Eastern Seaboard to Chesapeake Bay.
All it would take would be enough pet releases in various locations to create a breeding population.