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Burmese Python

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Burmese python in the grass
Burmese Python in the Everglades - Photo by National Park Service
Scientific Name: 
Python molurus bivittatus Kuhl, 1820 (ITIS)
Common Name: 
Burmese python
Native To: 
Southeast Asia (Harvey et al. 2016)
Date of U.S. Introduction: 
Established populations were first reported in 2000 (Harvey et al. 2016)
Means of Introduction: 
Imported to the U.S. for the pet trade; wild populations became established from animals that escaped or were intentionally released (Harvey et al. 2016)
Impact: 
Preys on native species, some of which are endangered (such as the Key Largo woodrat, Neotoma floridana smalli); may also compete with threatened native species, such as the indigo snake (Drymarchon couperi) (Harvey et al. 2016)
Current U.S. Distribution: 
South Florida

Spotlights

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

At its February 2021 meeting, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved staff recommendations to create new rules to address the importation, breeding and possession of high-risk invasive reptiles. The approved rule changes to Chapter 68-5, F.A.C. specifically address Burmese pythons, Argentine black and white tegus, green iguanas and 13 other high-risk nonnative snakes and lizards that pose a threat to Florida’s ecology, economy, and human health and safety. For more information, see New Rules for Invasive Nonnative Reptiles.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the opening of registration for the 2021 Florida Python Challenge® which will be held July 9-18, 2021. Registration is now open and members of the public can take the online training and then compete to remove invasive Burmese pythons from the wild. Visit FLPythonChallenge.org to register for the competition, take the online training, learn more about Burmese pythons and the unique Everglades ecosystem, and find resources for planning your trip to South Florida to participate in the Florida Python Challenge®.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Python Patrol is a no-cost training program that aims to create a network of trained individuals throughout south Florida who know how to identify Burmese pythons, report sightings, and in some cases, capture and humanely kill the snakes. Python Patrol training is offered throughout south and southwest Florida.

Distribution / Maps / Survey Status

University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.

Provides state, county, point and GIS data. Maps can be downloaded and shared.

Federally Regulated

DOI. FWS. Fish and Aquatic Conservation.

Includes species listed as injurious wildlife under the Federal Lacey Act (18 USC 42), which makes it illegal to import injurious wildlife into the United States or transport between the listed jurisdictions in the shipment clause (the continental United States, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and any possession of the United States) without a permit. An injurious wildlife listing would not prohibit intrastate transport or possession of that species within a State where those activities are not prohibited by the State.

Injurious wildlife are wild mammals, wild birds, amphibians, reptiles, fishes, crustaceans, mollusks and their offspring or eggs that are injurious to the interests of human beings, agriculture, horticulture, forestry, wildlife or wildlife resources of the U.S. Plants and organisms other than those stated above cannot be listed as injurious wildlife.
See also: Injurious Wildlife: A Summary of the Injurious Provisions of the Lacey Act (Dec 2017; PDF | 401 KB)

Images

University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.

Videos

Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source. Or, to display all related content view all resources for Burmese Python.

Partnership
IUCN. Species Survival Commission. Invasive Species Specialist Group.

Everglades Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area.

Texas State University System. Texas Invasive Species Institute.
Federal Government

DOI. USGS. Fort Collins Science Center.

DOI. National Park Service.

State and Local Government
Collier Soil and Water Conservation District (Florida).
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

South Florida Water Management District.

The South Florida Water Management District Governing Board is taking aggressive action to protect the Everglades and eliminate invasive pythons from its public lands. Starting in March 2017, the Python Elimination Program incentivizes a limited number of public-spirited individuals to humanely euthanize these destructive snakes, which have become an apex predator in the Everglades. The program provides access to python removal agents on designated SFWMD lands in Miami-Dade, Broward, Collier, Hendry and Palm Beach counties.

Academic

University of Florida. Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension.

Electronic Data Information Source - publication resources

University of Florida. Florida Museum of Natural History.

Professional

Citations