JUN 28, 2015 10:26 AM PDT

Giant Python Dies After Eating Porcupine

Pythons asphyxiate their prey before devouring it, a method of basically choking the animal to death before serving it for supper. This ensures that the snake can enjoy a struggle-free meal.

After a South African bicyclist discovered a fat and happy 12-and-a-half-foot python that had just devoured a big snack and shared a few pictures of it on the Internet, the snake went viral, but it wasn't long before park rangers found the same python lying dead near the bike trail with an unknown cause of death.

This snake was found dead after consuming a porcupine. The cause of death is unknown.

The carcass still had the huge lump in its belly, and the park rangers that discovered the snake wanted to know what was inside of it, as well as the cause of death, so investigations began.

The rangers' decision was to cut the python open with a sharp blade to find out what it had eaten, and what they found was a huge 30-pound porcupine. As you can imagine, the porcupine did a number on the snake's digestive tract with its sharp prickly quills.

Despite the injuries, it is likely that the porcupine was not the actual cause of death. It isn't unusual for pythons to eat porcupines and just about all of them live to tell the tale. Pythons have incredibly tough digestive systems that can handle this kind of abuse.

It still riddles the park rangers as to what exactly killed the python, but the snake was found under a rock ledge that it appeared to have fallen off of, and it's possible that the impact of the fall is what could have driven the porcupine's quills deep into the digestive tract of the snake, causing internal organ damage and bleeding as a result, and finally, leading to the snake's demise.

"The exact reasons for the snake's death are not clear," said reserve general manager Jennifer Fuller. "It is apparent that several porcupine quills were lodged inside the digestive tract. It had fallen off the rocky ledge. We don't know if it died beforehand, or whether the fall drove some of the quills into the digestive tract. With all the human interaction, this could have caused stress and the python would then regurgitate the meal up with all the quills causing a problem."



The poor guy was just hungry. Can you blame it for finding something that looked delicious and then eating it?

Source: CNN

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
OCT 23, 2019
Health & Medicine
OCT 23, 2019
Marijuana Has Possible Transgenerational Effects
Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit psychoactive drug in both the United States and Europe, meaning that many parents, or potential parents, are usi...
OCT 23, 2019
Drug Discovery & Development
OCT 23, 2019
Triple Drug Combo Extends Fruit Fly Lifespan
A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) suggests that a triple drug combination can extend the lifespan of a fruit ...
OCT 23, 2019
Plants & Animals
OCT 23, 2019
Taronga Zoo Welcomes Birth of Elusive Monkey
Taronga Zoo, situated in the beautiful city of Sydney, Australia, welcomed the birth of an elusive monkey species just this past week. Image Credit: Rick S...
OCT 23, 2019
Health & Medicine
OCT 23, 2019
Medical Marijuana Allowed in California K-12 Schools
Gavin Newson, the governor of California and the leading 2016 proponent of the recreational pot legalization initiative Proposition 64, signed a bill on We...
OCT 23, 2019
Plants & Animals
OCT 23, 2019
Why Do Camels Have Humps?
Camels are predominantly known for the humps that appear on their backs, and believe it or not, those humps are filled with body fat. Some camels sport jus...
OCT 23, 2019
Plants & Animals
OCT 23, 2019
The Great Barrier Reef is Disappearing, and Here's Why
Most people think of the Great Barrier Reef as a single, massive coral reef off the coast of Australia, but it isn’t. Instead, this beautiful underwa...
Loading Comments...