Florida’s Python Hunting season is back, and the state has expanded the search for invasive Burmese Pythons into Everglades National Park.
The first python challenge took place two years ago, with a contest for bagging the biggest ending in a tie. But the issue is serious in South Florida, where pythons, once pets, have been released and are now an invasive species. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is promoting this year’s hunt with a video.
Scientists say thousands of the snakes are to blame for the decline of native wildlife across the Everglades, but the park was off-limits during the original hunt in 2013. That hunt drew 1600 participants, including U.S. Senator Bill Nelson—but netted only 68 snakes. Pythons can grow to be up to 19 feet long. The "Python Challenge" will run from Jan. 16 through Feb. 14.