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    • #22795
      bjornb
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      Not much hunting going on in South Florida this time of year, but Fish & Game just announced the second Python Challenge. The last one took place in 2013, with rather modest results. A total of 68 snakes were caught by 1600 hunters; this year has already seen 82 snakes taken by less than 1000 entrants.

      The purpose of this hunt is to remove the invasive Burmese Python from the Everglades National Park area. Depending on the location you can either kill them or catch them alive. Top prize this year is $1500 for the most snakes, and another $1500 for the largest snake caught.

      My buddy Marv and I headed south from Fort Lauderdale yesterday morning, our destination was the abandoned Aerojet Missile Facility west of Homestead, Florida. Built in 1962 and abandoned less than a decade later after a missile explosion dropped a cloud of hydrocloric acid on Homestead, the area now looks like a classic ghost town and we figured the place would be teeming with snakes:

      We reached the place after an 8-mile bicycle ride down a closed off road (legal for non-motorized traffic). We even had to ford 3 of these moats that had been dug to further restrict access:

      Unfortunately the pythons stayed home; the weather was warm (80) and the best snake-catching takes place on cool days when they move into the road to soak up the sunshine. We did see one snake; a pissed off Water Moccasin:

      We’ll be trying again Monday morning; the temperatures are supposed to drop into the 40s Sunday night. Stay tuned.
      Like Goodsteel told me today: It’s a hunt even if you get skunked.

    • #22845
      Goodsteel
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      Yes it is!!!

    • #22881
      frkelly74
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      That moc looks well fed and sassy. I, very briefly considered going but thought you had to to live catch the critters. I would not go without a shotgun. There are reports of people finding anacondas near here in the St Johns system area. We let ferrel cats run the neighborhood and they act as an indicator as to whether the area has any large snakes When the cats are gone there is a problem. So far we have cats serenading us every night.

    • #22885
      Goodsteel
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      frkelly74;n769 wrote: That moc looks well fed and sassy. I, very briefly considered going but thought you had to to live catch the critters. I would not go without a shotgun. There are reports of people finding anacondas near here in the St Johns system area. We let ferrel cats run the neighborhood and they act as an indicator as to whether the area has any large snakes When the cats are gone there is a problem. So far we have cats serenading us every night.

      Definition of “eerie silence”.

    • #22975
      merlin 101
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      That sounds pretty cool, but just can’t quite that that movie ANACONDA outa my mind!

    • #22983
      Doc44
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      Might be fun to hunt pythons with my Colt python.
      Goodsteel is that pistol ready yet?

    • #23040
      timspawn
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      Looks like fun. I like the idea of biking in. We seem to have more giant Iguanas here than pythons but that cold winter we had a few years ago did a number on them.

    • #23521
      Smoke4320
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      something else for me to try .. Oh well Florida is not that far away ..I’ll be in the kill them category/locations

    • #24555
      Beagle333
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      No pythons here, but you could have a really good rattlesnake/copperhead/moccasin hunt. We got plenty of those here. More’n plenty. 😮
      Hunting pythons looks like it could be fun though.

    • #24640
      Uncle Grinch
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      I don’t know much about pythons ( the snake version ), but cottonmouth and copperhead moccasins, I’m familiar with. Both are very territorial and can be aggressive.
      Yours looks pissed! I hope you put him out of MY misery.

    • #24677
      Fishman
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      Ha! I thought this was going to be about a Colt revolver. But it was much better! Thanks for the.pics, it looks like a great bike ride.

    • #25056
      timspawn
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    • #25075
      MTtimberline
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      You can keep the pythons, water moccasins, and cottonmouths. Mostly only rattlesnakes, bull snakes and garter snakes up here. You can have our rattlesnakes as well, since the only good ones are dead ones for me. The bull snakes will act like rattlesnakes sometimes and get the same treatment if they do. If you’re gonna act like a rattlesnake, I’ll treat you like one. Your python hunt looks like great opportunity to be outdoors and enjoy the day though. Happy hunting.

    • #25305
      uber7mm
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      “….the only good ones are dead ones….”

      I loath snakes. None are welcome on my property. There’s a spiritual element to them that I don’t like. In a word: they’re slithery, which IMHO is worse than creepy.

      Kill as many as you can. I approve.

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