South Florida

‘It scared the heck out of him.’ Python sightings alarm South Florida neighborhood

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A compilation video showing some of Florida’s gators and pythons in action.

Not exactly what you want to encounter when you get home from a long day at work.: a large Burmese python.

A Boynton Beach neighborhood is on high alert this weekend after a sighting of the constrictor last Friday, The Palm Beach Post first reported.

The neighborhood where the snake was spotted, Villas of Golfview Harbour, is about 10 miles from Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, where there was a confirmed python sighting in 2016.

Though there is no picture of the Boynton Beach snake, the Miami Herald spoke to Golfview resident Terry Aperavich, who said his landscaper first spotted the reptile in the water while mowing his lawn in the back yard about a month ago.

“It scared the heck out of him,” said Aperavich, who added that the landscaper later looked up snakes on the Internet and the description matched a Burmese python. The witness estimated it to be about 10 feet to 12 feet long.

Aperavich’s son-in-law also reportedly spotted the unwanted visitor. So did a housekeeper, who reportedly quit in fear.

“Now the moms who live close to the canal are scared for their kids and the pet owners are scared for their animals,” said Aperavich, who posted signs around the area warning the residents. He also wrote a letter on the neighborhood watch website

“We want this snake caught ASAP,” read his letter. “It is a HIGH PRIORITY for all of the residents in this community. Be sure that you know where your kids and your pets are at all times until this thing is caught, and you might want to watch where you walk as well. A 10-12 foot snake is something that has to be taken seriously, as we’ve all seen pictures of them devouring things out in the Everglades.”

He has put in calls to the Boynton Beach Animal Control and the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission. But without a picture, he said, Florida wildlife officials have yet to come out to investigate.

Miami Dade Fire Department's Venom One Unit responded to a field in Miami Lakes Aug. 22, 2018 after a call came in reporting a large snake. Capt. Jeff Fobb bagged the feisty boa.