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Florida's python challenge kills 68 snakes

UPI News Service, 02/17/2013 

Florida's first snake bounty hunt resulted in the killing of 68 invasive snakes, far less than some hunters hoped, officials said.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel said nearly 1,600 hunters took part in the hunt of the invasive species of Burmese pythons in the Everglades.

The monthlong hunt closed Saturday, The Miami Herald said.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which sponsored the event, said the event was a success, and that they will likely hold another hunt in the future.

Those that killed the most snakes received cash awards for their work at Zoo Miami Saturday, the Sentinel reported, but many spent more on the expedition than they won.

Ruben Ramirez, of Miami, won the python permit holders competition by killing 18 pythons, the Herald said. He, along with his team, hunted for 27 of the 31 competition days.

Officials will now determine whether the hunt was an effective way of getting rid of the pythons.

Some criticized the hunt and said it could have resulted in serious injuries, but only one incident occurred when two men suffered a heat stroke.

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