On Tuesday night’s next edition of Guardians of the Glades, Dusty, Tom, Brittany, and Jay are night hunting for the invasive pythons that are taking over the ecosystems in Florida and they get a huge surprise laying in the middle of the road. It looks like a stick at first until you see it raise its head.
The action begins right out of the gate as Tom is driving and Dusty calls the shots. The look on Brittany’s face tells it all: This is not the average snake they are seeing. It’s a fast-paced clip and you will love it.
What happens on Guardians of the Glades?
As per usual, the action is fierce. Last week, Brittany Borges got completely engulfed by a huge python. The week before that Dusty Crum was bitten twice by a huge mama python too.
In the clip, Dusty and the gang ride up on a lone python they estimate to be near 8 feet and watch how Dusty “charms” the snake as Brittany cannot believe what she is watching. Dusty deftly grabs the head and another snake is out of commission.
Why are there so many pythons in Florida?
Burmese pythons are all over the Florida Everglades. So, how are they thriving in this foreign ecosystem so far from their native habitat and how did they get there?
First, Hurricane Andrew washed over Florida in 1992, and it damaged zoos, pet stores, and wildlife refuges in the process. Many of the animals that got out of their confines were located after the storm. But, Burmese pythons were easily melted into the ecosystem after Hurricane Andrew, escaping into the Florida Everglades and other parts of the state.
Many wildlife experts agree, too, that owners of pythons also can be irresponsible parties in all of this, and that it just takes a single breeding pair to start an invasion.
Florida Everglades is the ideal climate
The climate and ecosystem of Everglades National Park are perfect for the Burmese python. These snakes live in hot and humid areas of Asia. They eat a wide variety of birds, mammals, and reptiles in their native habitat. The Everglades is a smorgasbord of these animals that can sustain the Burmese python.
The python females of this species lay loads of eggs, up to 30-plus at a time. Bigger females can lay even more. It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of these snakes live within the state.
On top of that, these snakes can live for more than 20 years in the wild, and healthy females can have clutches of eggs for decades.
Other than the copious alligator population in Florida, there aren’t any animals that can really kill off the Burmese python. Enter the state of Florida and the python hunting programs that Dusty Crum and his team are part of, they get paid per kill.
Guardians of the Glades exclusive preview:
Tune in Tuesday night to see all the action on Guardians of the Glades. Viewers will get to see if the team led by Dusty Crum can avoid sustaining any more injuries and if Brittany avoids being tangled up in the clutches of any more snakes y’all.
Guardians of the Glades airs Tuesday at 10/9c on Discovery.