9-foot python found wrapped around Biscayne Bay dock in Florida

By Daniel Uria  |  Dec. 29, 2016 at 12:41 PM
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MIAMI, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- A kayaker in South Florida discovered a massive invasive python wrapped around a platform at a local national park.

The 9-foot Burmese Python was spotted about half a mile off shore from Biscayne Bay National park, according to CBS Miami.

It was the first python seen at the park and researchers determined it as an indicator of the expanding population of the invasive species.

"It's another raising of the notch in the war against pythons," University of Florida wildlife biologist Frank Mazzotti told the Miami Herald. "When you actually see something like this, how often does it occur that you don't see it?"

Scientists determined pythons living in Key Largo and believe they could have begun to swim to the park.

"To find one swimming is not surprising and it probably, in the course of swimming, spied that platform and said, 'Ah, this is a good place to get out in the sun,'" Mazzotti said.

Park biologist Vanessa McDonough said the python was located about a day after it was first seen and captured by district python wrangler Bobby Hill.

She also assured that python sightings in the park are extremely uncommon.

"We don't want people to think Biscayne Bay is teeming with pythons ready to chomp on people in the water," she said. "We don't want people afraid of the water."

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