Python Destruction of Everglades May Be Overhyped
At the end of January, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences published a study suggesting that Burmese pythons were decimating mammal populations in the Everglades. The numbers were shocking: a 99 percent decline in raccoon sightings, a 98 percent drop in opossum sightings, and so on.
The study was designed to compare reported sightings of mammals -- dead and alive -- from 1993 to 1999 with similar sightings between 2003 and 2011, after the pythons had arrived. Unsurprisingly, there were fewer sightings in the later period.
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