NAPLES, Fla. - A Burmese python that swallowed a white-tailed deer that actually weighed more than the python itself is believed to be the largest predator/prey ratio ever documented for the python, according to The Conservancy of Southwest Florida.
NOTE: GRAPHIC PHOTOS
Biologists from the Conservancy along with land managers from Collier-Seminole State Park found the 11-foot female Burmese python in April of 2015.
The documentation of their findings will be published in the March 2018 issue of Herpetological Review.
The teams found the fawn weight 35 pounds and the python itself was 31.5 pounds.
According to researchers, the invasive Burmese python may be responsible for 90 percent decline in the small mammal populations in the eastern Everglades.
"Imagine the potential consequences to the state and federally protected Florida panther if Burmese pythons adversely affect the number of white-tailed deer, a panther's primary prey," said Ian Bartoszek, a wildlife biologist with the Conservancy of Southwest Florida.
The Conservancy studies the Burmese python's breeding and eating habits to help find solutions to better control the population of the invasive species.
They capture and implant the pythons with a radio-transmitter and release them back at their capture site to help lead researchers to other pythons during breeding season.
Then, they find the breeding female pythons and remove them to disrupt the egg-laying cycle.
So far, Conservancy biologists have removed hundreds of adult Burmese pythons, with a combined weight of more than 10,000 pounds, from Southwest Florida.
Anyone who spots an invasive species should call 800-Ive-Got-1 or go to IveGotOne.org.
WATCH NEWS CONFERENCE BELOW (mobile users click here):