April 8, 2019 5:11 PM
Updated on April 8, 2019 5:48 PM
Researchers from the Big Cypress National Wildlife Refuge in Florida have captured a python that marks a record in the history of the place.
The animal, which was 5.2 m long and weighed 63.5 kg, had 73 eggs in development.
It is the largest female snake that has been removed from Big Cypress, the reserve announced on the Facebook page.
The reptile was caught thanks to an innovative technique to combat the invasive species of the reserve.
Burmese pythons pose a major threat to the native flora and fauna of Florida.
An estimated tens of thousands of these ophidians live in Big Cypress and in Everglades National Park, ecosystems adjacent to each other in South Florida.
What do the researchers do to find the pythons and remove them from the protected areas?
The Burmese python has been considered an invasive species since it was first seen in the Everglades in the 1980s.
The species is native to Asia, but it is believed that some people in Florida kept them as pets and that they released them when they saw that they grew too much.
Other pythons escaped from a breeding center destroyed by Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
These snakes have no natural predators in Florida and the US Geological Survey. says they have contributed to "drastic declines" of medium-sized mammals in the area.
There are an estimated tens of thousands of pythons in the Everglades and the Big Cypress. (Photo: Getty Images)
Once they have been imprisoned, the workers in the reserve "humanely sacrifice" them.
"They have a very, very negative impact on animals such as deer, birds and even panthers. reservation in a comment in his Facebook page.
Researchers in the park follow the female pythons in the reproduction phase by placing radio transmitters in the male pythons.
"The team followed one of the sentinel males through the channel and found this huge woman nearby," says the reservation about the finding announced on Friday.
In addition to removing invasive snakes, Big Cypress uses every discovery to collect data, develop new tools to remove them, and learn how these animals move through the area.