AP: Foreign Pythons Taking Over Florida Swamps
December 18, 2006, 06:28 PM
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Metaphor alert! Pythons aren't native to the Everglades, or at least, they used to be not native to the Everglades, but owners who find their pet pythons growing too large have been releasing them into the wild, with predictable results.

If the pythons proliferate enough, Miami will look like one of those Third World countries that Indiana Jones is always visiting.

It's a fascinating wildlife story, but there's a metaphor there, I suspect. Biologists don't think of this as migration, by the way, they use the term "invasive species."

Biologists Hunt Invasive Pythons in Fla. -

By TODD LEWAN, The Associated Press Dec 17, 2006 1:22 PM (1 day ago)

EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK, Fla. - "SNAKE!" Hearing this shout, Skip Snow slammed on the brakes. When the off-roader plowed to a halt, he and his partner, Lori Oberhofer, leaped out and took off running toward two snakes, actually - a pair of 10-foot Burmese pythons lying on a levee, sunning themselves. ....

"It's a now-or-never thing," Oberhofer says. "We still have a chance, with the python's numbers being so limited, to do something. But if we let this go, we don't know how far the pythons will migrate, how much they will reproduce." ....

Since 2000, slightly more than 1 million pythons have been imported by the United States for commercial sale; nearly half are shipped to Miami, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service says.