A massive Burmese python was caught this month at Shark Valley in Everglades National Park, Florida.
At just over 550 centimeters long (approximately 18 feet), the snake could be the second largest python ever caught in the state, with the largest being only 10 centimeters longer (4 inches).
Measuring 556.26 centimeters (18.25 feet), the snake was seen and caught by a permitted python researcher along the Shark Valley tram road, a popular path for cyclists and walkers.
According to U.S. Geological Survey officials, pythons of this size are capable of catching and devouring large prey, such as alligators and deer.
Burmese pythons aren’t native to the Everglades and are consuming more and more of the smaller animals that live in the park. With no natural predator there, the pythons are thriving, posing a great threat to the park's visitors and natural wildlife.
However, as CBS Miami reports, park officials regularly patrol the Everglades to safely remove and humanely destroy the large snakes.