The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


February 16, 2013

In the Everglades, hunters help check a slithery invader


It was exactly what Ramirez and Brana were hoping for as they sweated in the wild.

Brana and Ramirez wanted to prove that their outfit, Florida Python Hunters, a snake removal business, is an expert at harvesting snakes.

But on the Thursday before the end of the challenge, after five hours in the field, they were driving home empty-handed. As the raggedy Ford eased down a gravel road, Ramirez's wife, Michelle, called on a cellphone. "Did you catch anything?"

"No, nothing today. You know how hard it is," Ramirez said, exhausted after searching the edge of canals where wild alligators sunned on the banks, stepping in black muck that pulled at him like ankle weights, and pushing through brush with thorns that slapped his face. "It's not easy."

In the middle of the word "easy," Ramirez slammed the brakes and the phone flew. "Python!" he shouted.

A nine-foot snake was slithering down a stone levee toward a canal. Ramirez and Brana bolted from the truck. Weirdly, pythons usually don't move until someone reaches for them, so the guys stood for a minute taking photos.

When Ramirez got a little too close, the snake made a lightning U-turn toward woods. But Ramirez grabbed it by the tail, dragged it onto the road, stuck his tongue out, and threw up a victory sign.

"What I tell you, bro?" he shouted, gripping the python's head with one hand, high-fiving Brana with the other. "We're the best!"

Text Only
  • Amazon worker pilots drone around Space Needle

    Police say an out-of-town Amazon employee was the operator behind a drone that buzzed the Seattle Space Needle this week.

    July 25, 2014

  • eyebrows.jpg Coming Sunday: Browsing for brows

    As makeup sales soar, four tips to make your eyebrows raise others'. Coming Sunday

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Carjacked vehicle strikes crowd, killing 2 kids

    Two men forced a woman into the backseat of her car at gunpoint and drove it into a group of people on a corner in Philadelphia on Friday, killing two children and critically injuring three other people, police said.

    July 25, 2014

  • Man calls police chief "brain dead"

    A Liberty Township man was cited for placing a sign calling Mahoning Township’s police chief “brain dead and hell bound.”

    July 25, 2014

  • New warden returning to Lewisburg penitentiary

    David J. Ebbert has been tapped to replace Jeff Thomas as warden at United States Penitentiary in Lewisburg.

    July 25, 2014

  • Fast food workers to escalate wage demands

    Fast food workers say they’re prepared to escalate their campaign for higher wages and union representation, starting with a national convention in suburban Chicago where more than 1,000 workers are expected to discuss the future of the effort that has spread to dozens of cities in less than two years.

    July 25, 2014

  • 1plane18.jpg Air travel a leap of faith for passengers

    Airline travel requires passengers to make a leap of faith, entrusting their lives to pilots, airlines, air traffic controllers and others who regulate air travel.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Honduran president: U.S. has enormous responsibility for crisis

    The historic influx of illegal immigrants from Central America is caused primarily by the high demand for illicit drugs in the United States, Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez said Thursday.

    July 25, 2014

  • Today's Editorial: Child's sensibilities shield bad parents

    Periodically, a decree goes forth from the county seat announcing a special on child support, generally in the form of reducing charges and fines for all those able and willing to make good on some payments now past due.

    July 25, 2014

  • Budd fundraising run to pass Geisinger

    MILTON — It’s “kickstands up” tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. from LT’s Tavern on Route 405 in Milton where hundreds of motorcycles will take off on a run to raise funds for the Budds, the Ohio family whose matriarch, Sharon, recovers at Geisinger Medical Center from grave injuries suffered in a rock-throwing incident two weeks ago.

    July 25, 2014

The Daily Marquee

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.