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Fri Nite Frite: That Burmese python you tried to lose somewhere…

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File:Python molurus ???????? ?????.jpg
Burmese python/Mariluna

… he’s back, and he’s mad. Really mad:

MIAMI — Aside from being scarily large and voracious, Burmese pythons also are really good at finding their way home, according to new research conducted in Florida’s Everglades.

The discovery about pythons’ unusual navigational abilities doesn’t much help wildlife agencies desperately trying to curb the invasive snake’s population in the fragile wetlands. It might be something reptile owners should think about, though, if they’ve considered illegally dumping an unwanted pet python in the wild.

Six of the snakes were released in areas 13 to 22 miles from where they originally were captured. To the researchers’ surprise, the snakes figured out which way was home, and they stayed on track for months even when temperatures dropped and the cold-blooded snakes were less active. Unlike other snakes, the pythons moved with a purpose through their landscape instead of slithering randomly. It took the snakes three to nine months to get back to their original locations, according to the researchers.

Guess who wins this time?:

Yeah, we got that one right too.

No one knows how many of the snakes there are now in Florida, but they are thought to be escaped pets, stemming from Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

Hat tip: Slawek Bioslawek

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Comments
I have always wondered where the collection of ancestral memory is thought to exist by those who believe in evolution. How does any animal know what it is supposed to be or do, without any instructions? Or rather where do those instructions reside in a genome? I have never read anyone try to address this point. Where does a kangaroo get the knowledge to flex its knees and jump? I don't think one can claim its simply learned by observation, because if that was the case, a baby kangaroo would be just as apt to watch a bird fly by and attempt to fly, or watch a snake slithering by and attempt to lay on its belly and slither. There is no gene which we can find which says a kangaroo must know its a kangaroo. Every animal has a history of a million previous animals experience sitting in its body and we haven't the faintest idea where that knowledge exists.phoodoo
April 13, 2014
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