Thursday, April 13, 2006

Snakeskin boots to make a comeback?

Burmese pythons love the Florida Everglades climate. A Florida legislator has introduced a bill to place the mammoth snakes on the state's regulated reptile list. Among other provisions, people caught turning the snake loose could face jail time. Many pet owners have released the python into Florida's Everglades after becoming overwhelmed by the size. Burmese pythons can easily grow longer than 10 feet. While capable of killing humans, the most immediate concern is the python's ability to prey upon fragile animal species in the Everglades. Wildlife experts say the snakes are breeding as well in the giant Florida bog.

A Davidson College biology professor and student are part of a team that is studying how to remove the snakes from the Everglades. They inserted tracking devices into four snakes caught in the swamp late last year.

Tracking them is fine, but it may be hard to extract them without some killing. I wouldn't want this problem to get farther along if I lived in Florida. Bring the snakeskin boot into fashion. Buy a matching jacket too.

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