Nearly 19 foot python caught in S. FL - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Nearly 19 foot python caught in S. FL

Photographer: Courtesy: FWC Photographer: Courtesy: FWC
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MIAMI DADE COUNTY, FL (WFLX) - A Burmese python found in Miami set records as the largest such snake ever captured in the Florida , according to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The python was 18 feet, 8 inches long and weighed 128 pounds. The female python was not carrying eggs, according to University of Florida scientists who examined the snake.

The previous Florida record setter was a 17-foot, 7-inch python.

The latest big snake was captured and killed on May 11th by Jason Leon, a Miami man.

 Leon was riding late at night in a rural area of southeast Miami-Dade County when he and his passenger spotted the python, according to FWC officials.

Leon stopped his car, grabbed the snake behind its head and started dragging it out of a brush.

The snake began to wrap itself around his leg, he called for assistance from others and then used a knife to kill the snake., according to FWC.

Leon once owned Burmese pythons as pets and has experience handling this nonvenomous constrictor species.

"Jason Leon's nighttime sighting and capture of a Burmese python of more than 18 feet in length is a notable accomplishment that set a Florida record. The FWC is grateful to him both for safely removing such a large Burmese python and for reporting its capture," said Kristen Sommers, Exotic Species Coordination Section Leader for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, in a statement.

The python was turned over to the University of Florida's Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, according to FWC.

FWC urges the public to report sightings of exotic species to IveGot1.org or 888-IveGot1.

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