Francis Rooney joins the ranks of python hunters

Bruno Cirelli
Agosto 13, 2017

"I am working every day, all the time, to increase funding for the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan and will continue to raise awareness every way possible, including hunting pythons, about the Everglades, our state and national environmental treasure", Rooney said.

Rooney's office said he captured two adults and three hatchlings of the invasive pythons.

Florida Congressman Francis Rooney (R-Naples) eliminated five Burmese pythons during a hunt Thursday night in Big Cypress Swamp.

Pythons are devouring virtually everything that moves in the Everglades, including native Florida alligators. Marsh rabbits, raccoons, opossums, bobcats, deer, great blue herons, wood storks all have disappeared as a result of the feverish appetite of the pythons, leaving behind a desolate ecosystem.

The objective of the Python Elimination Program is to eliminate the invasive Burmese Python which damages the Everglades ecosystem and its native wildlife.

South Florida Water Management District welcomed Rooney on the hunt. "We need the public's help", said Carol Lyn Parrish, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which organized the 2013 public python hunt.

While most of these would-be snake hunters are in it for the thrill of getting the pythons curling around their arms and even bodies, some may apply to do it as profit-making contractors to make a fame as well as fortune. O'Keefe explained, "It's the prevention of 40 to 50 more snakes by destroying a large female carrying 40 to 50 eggs; and, it's the countless number of native Florida animals spared from the jaws of these killing-machines".

We all know about the massive python problem in South Florida. In May, Lieutenant Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera embarked on the snake hunt, ultimately killing a 15-foot python with a pocketknife. "Having also experienced the program firsthand by participating in a live hunt, I can not say enough about the tremendous work of our bounty hunters working long hours and enduring the harsh summer elements to rid the Everglades of this destructive python threat".

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