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07 December 2017, 12:27 | Melissa Porter
RECORD BREAKING The snake measure in at over 17 feet
"That snake could pretty much kill any full-grown man", said Jason Leon, one of the snake hunters who discovered the behemoth serpent to WTVJ. More than 730 pythons have been killed since then.
Thousands of pythons are estimated to occupy South Florida and are known to cause problems for wildlife in the Everglades.
In a video posted the SFWMD's Facebook page, Leon said he grabbed the snake and shot it in the head. 'There's no natural predators too'.
In addition to the South Florida record, Leon also holds the state record for the largest Burmese python ever captured, from his 2013 capture of an 18-footer, the Herald reported. The program pays $50 for for a four-foot snake and $25 for each additional foot beyond that.
District spokesman Randy Smith said the non-venomous constrictor was captured in the Everglades, about 40 miles from Miami, and brought to the district's Homestead Field Station to be measured.
Smith added the python program has been the "most successful endeavor in trying to make a dent in the population", eliminating at least 743 snakes (some of them pregnant females) since the program's inception in March. Another python - a smaller male - was also nearby but was not caught.
The hunters are paid $8.10 per hour for the hunt, plus a bounty for each snake caught. Though an avid python catcher, he doesn't advocate tackling large ones alone.
The catch breaks the record of the previous holder, Dusty Crum, by just two inches.
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