FORT MYERS, Fla. - A follow up to a story we've been talking about for years now, Florida's python problem in the Everglades. Law makers on Capitol Hill held a hearing on Thursday on a bill known as the 'Python Ban.' The bill, if passed, would essentially ban people from bringing pythons into the United States.
The python is an invasive species and it's reeking havoc on Florida's ecosystem. It's a huge problem in the Everglades, where a Florida python hunter told us last month, he believes tens of thousands of pythons live.
For our story, we traveled to Gainesville, to the University of Florida, to take a look at a python that was caught in the Everglades. It was considered the biggest to date ever found in Florida measuring 17 feet 7 inches long and had 87 eggs inside which is also said to be a record.
Then we went into the Everglades ourselves and found a 7 foot 9 inch long python. Experts believe the pythons were released and escaped after Hurricane Andrew in 1992 and have been able to thrive in our sub-tropical environment. WINK News spoke with Dr. Kenneth Krysko in Gainesville, who gave us some perspective on this problem.
"Knowing that their numbers have increased over the last few years, we know that we're still in the exponential growth phase for this invasive species," said Krysko.
No decisions are being made yet on this bill but a number of organizations spoke at the hearing including National Geographic and small businesses that deal in snakes.
November 19, 2012 - WINK News goes python hunting inside the Everglades