Last year, a 23-year-old Miami man riding an ATV for fun in the South Florida swamps came across the largest Burmese python ever seen in the wild in North America.
Jason Leon, an amateur herpetologist and reptile enthusiast who enjoys snorkeling with alligators, jumped off his ATV, grabbed the python by the back of the head, and started wrestling for his life.
Fifteen minutes later, he beheaded the serpent and dropped it on the road, watching it slither more than 15 feet down the road without a head.
In the second video snippet of The Python Invasion featured on MiamiHerald.com, Leon takes viewers on a hunt into the Everglades, riding an airboat at night to isolated islands in search of snakes that are destroying the Everglades ecosystem. The exotic animal’s poster-child is the Burmese python, a ravenous snake second in size only to the anaconda. In the places it as gained a foothold in the Everglades, native animal populations have crashed by as much as 98%.
Never miss a local story.
The video is the second of several outtakes from production shoots of a documentary that will broadcast on WPBT2 later in the year. In 2013, Explica Media started principal photography on the documentary film on the spread of pythons and other invasive species in the Florida Everglades.
Oscar Corral, a former Miami Herald reporter, is the founder and president of Explica Media, and the director and producer of The Python Invasion.
To watch video snippets, go to MiamiHerald.com.