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Everglades swamped with invading pythons

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posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:21 AM
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Everglades swamped with invading pythons


news.yahoo.com

THE EVERGLADES, Florida (Reuters) – The population of Burmese pythons in Florida's Everglades may have grown to as many as 150,000 as the non-native snakes make a home and breed in the fragile wetlands, officials said on Thursday.

Wildlife biologists say the troublesome invaders -- dumped in the Everglades by pet owners who no longer want them -- have become a pest and pose a significant threat to endangered species like the wood stork and Key Largo woodrat.

"They eat things that we care about," said Skip Snow, an Everglades National Park biologist, as he showed a captured, 15-foot
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:21 AM
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Great! As if the poor S. Florida residents didn't have enough to worry about with the hurricanes, hanging chads, obnoxious tourist, Jimmy Buffett, and ravenous alligators on the rise.

Now....invading PYTHONS

Exotic pet owners turning their one time pets free to breed and grow into monsters of the Everglades.

Perhaps the owners of Pet big cats, wolves, and other predators can release their pets and turn the Everglades into a
theme park for the would be Big Game Hunter.

I wonder how this will affect the casual tourist that just wants a leisurely canoe ride thru the canoe trails down around Flamingo? I took an overnighter in the mangrove swamps once and it was a throughly enjoyable experience and the fishing was fantastic. I might have second thoughts knowing the possibility of being squeezed to death and eaten, was a possibility.

news.yahoo.com
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 31-5-2009 by whaaa]



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:26 AM
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It is shameful because pet stores and breeders can sell Burmese pythons to ANYONE!

Any 12 year old can purchase a snake that will grow to be 250 lbs and need a huge cage and require two grown men to lift it.

They should require permits to keep animals of that nature. Permits means these fools can't buy them then get tired and dump them after a year or 3. Permits also means they have to change ownership and explain where the snake went.

They even dump elderly/sick/ blind horses in the everglades to die or being eaten. Yup its cheaper than disposing of the body, just toss the poor helpless (even blind) animal into the swamps and drive away.

[edit on 31-5-2009 by Sonya610]



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:41 AM
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As much as I love animals and take pet ownership very seriously, I have serious misgivings about exotic pets. Too many times people do just this sort of thing and we are only now seeing the start of the effect on eco systems from this sort of irresponsible behavior.

I just don't get how anyone could have warm fuzzy feelings from a python! Different strokes I suppose, but having a pet that could later view me as lunch is not very inviting.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:59 AM
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Originally posted by redhead57
I just don't get how anyone could have warm fuzzy feelings from a python! Different strokes I suppose, but having a pet that could later view me as lunch is not very inviting.


There are plenty of reptile fans. Most wouldn't try to own a Burmese just because of the size and responsibility, but those that do have them typically really LIKE the fact that they are so big and can in fact overpower their owners. They just need to be handled a lot as babies otherwise they can be vicious as adults (another thing most people probably do not consider when they buy a 24" burmese at a pet shop, and the pet shop surely isn't going to warn them).

The Burmese owners generally always have a spotter when handling an adult snake though (i.e. family member or friend that is with them to help in case something happens).



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 10:21 AM
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reply to post by whaaa
 


This makes me mad. I'm from Naples, right there on the Everglades. Sadly, nothing will be done. It's illegal to sell pythons in Florida [at least in Collier County] but the rich people still find away around it--because they're rich, the corrupt Sheriff's Departments just turn a blind eye.

Then the politicians will provide lipservice, saying that they'll fix things, but they won't because they're in the back pockets of the land developers. Maybe developing the land is what they have in mind as "taking care of the problem."



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 10:33 AM
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This only further proves what I have been saying for a long time.

South Florida is a world class destination where the freedom to hang around and get wrapped up in the pursuit of individual liberty is nothing the denizens take lightly.

Be forewarned agents and provocateurs of the New World Order when you come to South Florida you are definitely not in Kansas anymore!



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 10:38 AM
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I agree with sonya..you will find the vast majority of reptile lovers are responsible and ehhh *know* their reptiles.Most snake owners wouldn't ever think of owning such a monster snake,admire them yes but they know the time,money,space and dedication that comes with it is alot to handle.These naive people buy them...watch them grow,grow,grow,grow and then it hits them what they have let themselves in for...I bet alot of these ditched snakes are the result of young kids pestering mom and dad.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 10:49 AM
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I have known a few people that kept reptiles and did really care about them. "shudder". When my kids were little their friend down the street had a huge yellow colored snake! The father used to take it for walks all curled around him, another "shudder" and even raised his own rats for meals.

Really it is a matter of preference and responsibility. I guess with all the irresponsible mammal owners out there we have to expect a few irresponsible reptile owners. Until people see the value in life, any life....human, mammal or reptile this sort of crap will continue.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 10:53 AM
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reply to post by Sonya610
 


That does make sense...sort of. Just like people want to have the biggest and baddest dogs, Pitt bulls come to mind, I could see that logic. Bad thing is these potentially dangerous animals are raised too often by people that should not even be allowed to have a gold fish. I have seen too many bad dog bites and attacks by pitts that were abused and raised to be killers when a little love, training and again...responsibility could have made the same dog a wonderful, loyal and loving pet.

And we call the dogs and snakes animals!



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:13 PM
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reply to post by whaaa
 


lol Burmese pythons are not capibale of eating adult humans, a small child maybe, stop watching the hollywood movies like Aniconda, even those are not able to do so. Snakes mouths only hinge open one way out shoulders give them alot of trouble!



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:19 PM
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A friend of a friend, a single mother with a toddler and a baby on the way has just bought one of these, because it's "cute". She has no experience with reptiles, can barely read, and has no common sense.

She had wanted a frog, but the pet-shop owner talked her into getting the python. Not long after she got it, the mutual friend found the toddler crying and investigated. The child had been left alone with the snake, which had wrapped itself around her neck and was tightening.

The snake is still there, in an open aquarium tank it can climb out of.


I believe the sales of animals which become dangerous as they age should be severely restricted. The should not be available to idiots from the corner pet store.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:21 PM
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Originally posted by Verd_Vhett
lol Burmese pythons are not capibale of eating adult humans, a small child maybe, stop watching the hollywood movies like Aniconda, even those are not able to do so. Snakes mouths only hinge open one way out shoulders give them alot of trouble!


Very true! But they are certainly capable of KILLING an adult human, fairly easily in fact. They are extremely powerful and could easily strangle/smother an adult. And you are right the shoulders are usually the problem (they have TRIED, does it matter if they try and fail to swallow their dead prey? Probably not to the victim).

It is not likely to happen in the wild, as most would not see humans as food and aren't likely to try and catch a human. But people that own them as pets and handle them DO have to be careful.

[edit on 31-5-2009 by Sonya610]



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:36 PM
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Originally posted by Verd_Vhett
reply to post by whaaa
 


lol Burmese pythons are not capibale of eating adult humans, a small child maybe, stop watching the hollywood movies like Aniconda, even those are not able to do so. Snakes mouths only hinge open one way out shoulders give them alot of trouble!


Lol at you thinking it's about getting eaten. Pythons kill by crushing and suffocation. The average Burmese Python grows 18' long, and they keep growing longer for as long as they live. At that size they have been known to swallow live pigs and goats. A large one could easily swallow a child, and can crush an unaided adult to death.

The snake jawbones are connected by long, flexible quadrate bones, which enable the mouth to open to a wider circumference than the head. Pythons have the largest mouths of all snakes.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:43 PM
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Thanks for bringing this up!

I'm orginally from Ft. Lauderdale, lived there my whole life (I'm 25),
and I have seen first-hand how quickly these pests have spread.

The problem is with the pet owners, and the regulations on the species.
For example, you can see how uninformed people are by reading this
thread- HR669 Animal Prohibitionist Agenda

HR669 is a bill under review right now I believe, that would help restrict
the import and sale of invasive species such as pythons and what not, but
some ignorant people think this bill would abolish all pet-owning rights.

Myself and several others in that thread, tried multiple times to enlighten
the certain individuals that wouldn't even bother to read the actual bill.

Anways, I digress. It may be too late for the invasive species that are
already here, mine as well consider them native, but there are measures
that can be taken to prevent further destruction to our native environments!

For you exotic animal lovers, why not give a Native animal some love instead?



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 12:49 PM
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Thanks whaaa. Great stuff.


Love that detailed info Kailassa. Thanks.


...What with imported "pets" that people let loose, on top of global warming, things promise to get quite interesting here in North America. Good thing I like critters.




posted on May, 31 2009 @ 02:13 PM
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The newest tropical snake pet is the anaconda. Now there's a snake I don't want in any waters frequented by US citizens for any reason. My local ISP ran a story about interdicting a shipment that was bound for NYC. Not kool!!
Zindo



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 02:21 PM
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Originally posted by ZindoDoone
The newest tropical snake pet is the anaconda. Now there's a snake I don't want in any waters frequented by US citizens for any reason. My local ISP ran a story about interdicting a shipment that was bound for NYC. Not kool!!
Zindo


NYC is much better than Florida. Most exotic snakes cannot be released and start up wild populations in NYC because the winters are too cold.

The difficult thing about state laws and reptiles is that reptiles are frequently shipped Fed X. You can buy a reptile online and have it delivered anywhere in the u.s. very quickly. That is how most buy their animals, there and shows, if they are really into reptile keeping. Though if they were not sold in petshops as tiny babies, and people had to buy them online they may be more likely to realize what they are buying.

Mammals need to be shipped via airline carrier, which makes it MUCH more difficult to sneak it by the inspectors. Fed-X shipments are just a box labeled "Live Animals" and no one is going to open the box to check what it is.


[edit on 31-5-2009 by Sonya610]



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 02:31 PM
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Ahh, poor Florida.

I am an avid Reptile person, we own a couple of skinks, an Iguana and some bearded dragons. They are very time comsuming as far as pets go, I could only imagine the work required for these giant exotic snakes.

I would never consider getting one, it's simply not a good idea, these animals aren't suppose to be locked up in a cage. Their size is proof of that.

It would be like trying to domesticate a Giraffe or something. Sure you could do it, but why would you? Other than the cool factor of having a Giraffe?

There is a need for more permit creation and stricter guidelines for exotic animal sales and distrubution. Mostly for reptiles since they seem to be the easiest to move around.

I hope Florida can come up with a suitable response to the situation. And let's all hope it doesn't involve extermination.

~Keeper



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 02:47 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower
There is a need for more permit creation and stricter guidelines for exotic animal sales and distrubution. Mostly for reptiles since they seem to be the easiest to move around.


Actually from what I understand the tropical fish hobby industry has the same woes and concerns regarding the spread of illegal and damaging species... Albeit true enough fish are harder to transport then reptiles, it is just as much if not more of a concern, as many of the fish being introduced are very aggressive in their predatory nature and wreak a lot of havoc in the waterways...

[edit on 5-31-2009 by IronDogg]



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