INSIDE NATURE'S GIANTS: Monster Python on WXXI-TV

INSIDE NATURE'S GIANTS: Monster Python on WXXI-TV

Wed, 01/25/2012 - 10:00pm

Scientists measure the length of a female and male Burmese Python.

Credit: Courtesy of Windfall Films

Venture with the experts into the Florida Everglades, where giant Burmese pythons are thriving and threatening some native species with extinction.

In Florida’s Everglades, Mark Evans and Dr. Joy Reidenberg meet “python hunters” who are attempting to control the python population (approximately 100,000) through a cull. They join reptile expert Jeanette Wyneken to dissect two pythons: a nine-foot male and a 14-foot female. INSIDE NATURE'S GIANTS: Monster Python, airing Wednesday, January 25 at 10 p.m. on WXXI-TV/HD (DT 21.1/cable 1011), explores the science of slithering, as well as the development of “infra-red goggles” that let the snakes hunt warm-blooded prey in the dark and a flexible jaw that allows them to stretch their mouths around huge prey, including alligators. The scientists make an amazing discovery in the female: ovaries bulging with 40 egg follicles ready to be fertilized. Richard Dawkins describes how snakes evolved from four-legged lizard-like ancestors, and biologist Simon Watt finds out what it feels like to be crushed by a real-life python.



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