Couple finds dead python in Manatee County

- A couple found a dead Burmese python on Wednesday morning while driving along U.S. 41 next to Airport Manatee.

Brooke Dawson said her husband, Chris didn't believe her when she first spotted the nearly 10-foot long reptile.

"I was like, 'Chris, did you just see the snake on the side of the road?'" said Dawson.

She turned the car around and drove back. After spotting the snake again, neither one could believe what they had found.

"It was huge. It was laid out in the road, and there's no way you could have missed it," said Dawson.

They loaded the dead snake into their vehicle and took it home. They recorded a video measuring out the snake to be 9-feet and 6-inches long.

After posting the video on Facebook, a friend advised Dawson to call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Officers came to her home to pick up the snake's carcass.

FWC officials told FOX 13 on Friday, they intend to examine the snake, opening up its stomach to check the content and attempting to determine its gender, to get an idea of whether or not the snake is female and could have had babies.

FWC officials believe the python is a former pet that an owner released into the wild. It's only the fourth Burmese python sighting they've had since 2008.

At Dawson's request, the FWC allowed her to keep the snake's skin. 

While she is not a fan of snakes, she said she does love arts and crafts and runs a crafting business called ABC Creations.

Dawson intends to use the snakeskin for a DIY project.

"I'm going to put it up on the wall. It will be a conversation piece to talk about for sure," said Dawson.

According to the FWC, python owners are required to register and microchip their animals. The dead python was not registered.

Instead of releasing unwanted snakes into the wild, the FWC encourages snake owners to call 888-IVE-GOT1 (888-483-4681).

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