MIAMI – The 2022 Florida Python Challenge was kicked off in South Florida on Friday, marking the start of one of the state’s most famous conservation efforts. Upwards of 800 participants are taking place, including representatives from 32 U.S. states and Canada.
The goal of the challenge is to find and remove Burmese pythons from the Everglades. The pythons are invasive, meaning they are not native to the area and pose a threat to most all native species in the area. The Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission was joined by Florida First Lady Casey DeSantis to announce the kickoff.
The challenge runs from August 5th until August 14th at 5:00 pm. Those who’ve entered are eligible to win their share of thousands of dollars in prizes. The pythons were introduced into the Everglades ecosystem largely through the illegal animal trafficking trade.
Cash prizes available will total up to $2,500. Those looking to join still have the opportunity to do so, by visiting FLPythonChallenge.org. There’s a $25 registration fee and a free online training course to complete before embarking out.