How is the presence of Burmese pythons changing the Everglades?

1 Answer
Dec 1, 2016

Answer:

Burmese pythons are having a tremendous impact on the Everglades.

Explanation:

Burmese pythons are having a tremendous impact on the Everglades. These top predators have been known to consume much of the natural wildlife, including birds and mammals. They've even been known to eat alligators.

Similar to how most invasive species generally impact an ecosystem, the Burmese python preys on the wildlife, affecting population abundance, and competes with other animals. With population numbers differing far from normal, we may then see a chain reaction.

For example, the Burmese python consumes a lot of marsh rabbits (scientists radio collared a bunch of these animals and 77% were eaten by Burmese pythons ). Any other animal that depends on the marsh rabbits, will feel this impact. This impact extends beyond animals too: plants that the rabbit consumes may be affected if their main seed disperser declines rapidly.

The Burmese python has few predators in Florida, with alligators and humans being the only two. Thus, this species poses a large concern.

https://www.nps.gov/ever/learn/nature/upload/2013-Python-Reprint-Hi-Res-2.pdf

The image below shows the range of the Burmese python.
http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/282/1805/20150120

To read more about the Burmese python in Florida, see here and here .