Residents in Florida were horrified when they recently saw a massive Burmese python slithering around a neighborhood. According to reports, the python was spotted in a residential area near Miami.
While wildlife experts have yet to confirm the species, it’s very likely to be a Burmese python. This would also make sense considering this type of snake is an invasive species in the state. In addition, Burmese pythons on average measure from 10 to 16 feet in length. While the species is typically found in Asia, they thrive in Florida’s subtropical climate.
They’re also significantly prevalent in Florida’s Everglades National Park. However, sometimes they venture into residential areas and surprise Floridians.
According to Ron Magill, Director of Communications at Zoo Miami, he is “99.9 percent sure” the recently seen snake is a Burmese Python.
As seen in the pictures, the snake seems to blend into its surroundings, making it more dangerous for people nearby. According to Magill, people should avoid certain areas to ensure they don’t run into the slithering reptile.
“Stay away from high patches of grass and thickets of grass,” he noted. “Stay on sidewalks, low-cut grass, and areas where you have a clear sight of view around. And do not let your pets roam free.”
Florida residents warn about lurking python via social media
Per reports from the Miami Herald, neighborhood security at a community in Doral, Florida, was the first to tell residents about the lurking python.
The serpent was too close for comfort for resident Juan Ramirez as he located it right outside his home. “Walking around the lake, and was like, where is the snake?” And then I saw the snake and went, like, ‘Wow!'” Ramirez said.
However, he’s not the only person who’s seen the reptile. In a Facebook post, resident Nelly Pujols said that her son had spotted the serpent in a lake near 114 Avenue in Doral. She warned: “Be aware with kids playing nearby and pets.” In addition, fellow resident Vanessa Jaramillo replied to her post with a clip of the python in the water.
Later, the city responded on social media, saying the local Wildlife Control Department had been made aware of the slithering situation.
The species was first introduced to Florida in the 1970s as many wanted to keep them as exotic pets. However, some were inevitably released into the wild. As a result, the species has decimated the ecosystem as the state is overrun with pythons today.
Because of their massive size, Burmese pythons have few predators, with humans being the exception. Unfortunately, this makes the species extremely invasive— so much so that the state hosts an annual Burmese Python hunting competition each year that attracts snake hunters from all over the country to try their hand at hunting the creatures.