Friday 6 October 2023

Python has been eating cats at a trailer park in Oklahoma, USA

A most disturbing story indicating a less than optimal relationship between humans and domestic cats, to say the very least. The story is that a massive 13-foot python has been slithering around a trailer park in South Oklahoma City, US, killing and eating domestic cats at the park. The snake is also eating opossums and rats.

Python. Image: MikeB.

An expert was called in to get rid of the predator. Trevor Bounds of Red Beard Wildlife Control said: "The mouth on that thing is the size of your foot and when it opens up, you're going to be able to fit something pretty large in there."

He and other experts believe that the stake was a pet which escaped. Or it was released by the owner. Comment: I'm being cynical and speculative but I wonder whether the snake's owner deliberately allowed it to go outside and live outside in order to keep down the numbers of cats, rats and opossums which he didn't like. As I said speculative idea but quite possibly plausible.

Staff at the trailer park warned residents to be on the lookout for the snake. The python kills animals by constricting them, forcing all the life out of them and then swallowing them. They can kill small children so there was a real danger that a child was at risk.

We are told that the snake is a reticulated python. It is one of the largest species of snake. It lives under one of the trailers. It is still there according to this story because they are still looking for it.

Mr Bounds said: "We were using our thermal camera last week to find it but because it is cold-blooded, we had to just look for an outline of him. They can get up to 24 feet if you let them, maybe longer. The body of this snake is like Mike Tyson's biceps but 13 feet long."

The problem first came to light when neighbours reported that their cats were going missing. And then carcasses of large animals were found in the crawl space beneath one particular trailer.

There is a primary school nearby hence the worry about small kids. At this time the snake, as mentioned, hasn't been caught but traps have been set up and there is a 24-hour live feed watching the place.

As soon as the snake moves the cameras will be alerted and they will send a signal to Mr Bounds' phone. The park staff wants the snake out of the area asap for obvious reasons.

Comment: the story begs the question as to what they are doing about the owner of the snake. Is he being prosecuted? Have the police been called or should they be called? He has apparently been using his snake to kill people's domestic cats. Isn't that using a pet animal as a weapon to destroy the property of others?

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