Grist’s take on potential python proliferation is, of course, unsurpassable — but if it were to be surpassed, it would be by this article in the San Francisco Chronicle. Gotta love a paper that gives its reporter some editorial leeway for humor. Some of my favorite tidbits:
Biologists estimate 30,000 nonnative giant snakes live in the Everglades, perhaps more. Some have begun appearing in areas outside the park, alarming biologists and also people who don’t care for snakes.
The snake that managed to slither 100 miles turned up on the shore of Lake Okeechobee in south central Florida. Another python made it as far as Vero Beach, Fla., on the Atlantic coast. Vero Beach is the spring training site for the Los Angeles Dodgers, but the team has not reported any casualties, although its pitching staff could use help.
The natural enemies of the python are lions, tigers and other large cats. There are few free-roaming African lions and tigers between Florida and San Francisco, the geological survey said.
Small Florida deer have been turning up inside the digestive tracts of Everglades pythons, which has alarmed deer lovers and also the deer.
As for other potential prey, human beings – like rodents, beavers and deer – are mammals, government scientists confirmed.