Florida is offering rewards on Burmese Pythons found in the wild in certain places to see whether the numbers can be controlled using the public. This is despite the fact that the Burmese Python is endangered in its native range. Really folks, capture them and deport them. Make the world a better place. If it’s worth $1000 to inspire killers, would it not be worth $25 or so to return one to Asia?
“Earlier this year, researchers at Virginia Tech University, Davidson College and the U.S. Geological Survey reported that populations of rabbits and foxes have disappeared and numbers of raccoons, opossums and bobcats have dropped as much as 99%.”
Certainly, it would be very difficult to capture some pythons but offering a bounty greater for live specimens than dead ones would be a flexible way to handle that. One could also promote the population of prey-species with breeding programmes or create natural barriers around protected areas for prey-species to make the “problem” disappear. Eco-tourism for pythons could more than pay for the costs of saving the pythons.
When I was a boy on the farm there was a “problem” with a shortage of hares, our prey. My father cut firewood in the forest and instead of scattering brush began piles of brush/tree-limbs. The “problem” disappeared as the hares had an abundance of tender shoots for food all winter and a hiding place from foxes, coyotes, owls, their predators. We had so many hares, I used to harvest 4-6 every day before school to feed my family. As the pythons can swim and climb and pass through small openings, protecting prey-species would be challenging but not impossible. Design enclosures for feeding/breeding that prey-species could exit but pythons could not enter. One could even create python-detectors that would repel the pythons along some perimeter.