GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Most people think snakes are icky. Indiana Jones even hated them.
No matter what your experience, I bet you've never seen one like this.
"It's the biggest one found in the Everglades to date. Burmese Pythons are among the giant species of pythons. They exceed 20 feet in their native range. This particular animal is 17 1/2 feet," senior biologist Rob Robins said.
She was also found with 87 eggs, a record in the Sunshine State. Scientists at UF spent all summer processing the skin and prepping it for display in the Florida Museum of Natural History.
To Nicholas Cotou, the big gal is the crown jewel of research.
"It's a lot different to see it in person than to hear a number. It was really exciting to see it unfolded on a table and actually be working on it," he said.
The Burmese python is an invasive species meaning it mass produces and can be harmful if the population isn't controlled. Robins says that's why this find is so important. If they can learn more about the animal, they can help keep me and you safe and the reptiles where they belong.
"You don't want to tangle with a large, Burmese Python. They do have very large, sharp recurred teeth and they will defend themselves aggressively," he said.
Even scarier? This discovery is just the tip of the iceberg.
"It's only a matter of time before another, larger snake is found."
Because the mother was killed before the eggs were laid, they did not fully develop. They'll stay at UF on a contingency basis and be used in the future, if needed.