The South Florida Water Management District's Python Elimination Program has hit a major milestone. In less than five months, hunters have killed their 500th Burmese python.
"Every one of these 500 snakes killed helps ensure the lives of hundreds of native species essential to the Everglades ecosystem," SFWMD Governing Board Chairman Dan O'Keefe said in a statement.
The district said python hunter Jason Leon, of Miami, killed the 500th snake. Earlier this month Leon caught one of the largest snakes, measuring in at 14 feet and 9 inches.
The 500th snake was a 7-foot python captured around 5 a.m. Thursday, according to the district.
The largest snake captured on record measured 16 feet and 10 inches.
In total, the snakes eliminated through the Python Elimination Program would stretch more than 3,300 feet in length and weigh in at more than three tons.