They worked their way into the winner’s circle.
Participants removed more than 230 Burmese pythons from the Florida Everglades in the Sunshine State’s annual 10-day contest.
Nearly 1,000 people from 32 states, Canada and Latvia participated in the Florida Python Challenge, the goal of which is to remove as many invasive reptiles from the reserve as possible, the Flordia Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Thursday.
Entrant Matthew Concepcion won the top prize of $10,000 for catching the most snakes. Concepcion caught 28 pythons – 13 more than the second place winner.
The longest python captured in the competition was over 11 feet, earning its discoverer, Dustin Crum, a $1,500 prize.
Burmese pythons are native to Southeast Asia and were transplanted to the Everglades, where they have been causing environmental havoc in wetland habitats for decades. Massive snakes feed mainly on birds, mammals and other reptiles.
Reptiles are incredibly invasive. A female Burmese python can lay 50 to 100 eggs at a time, Flordia officials said.
“Removing these snakes is one of many efforts we are making to restore and maintain the Everglades ecosystem,” Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said.
With post wires
New York Post