Men capture massive python in Florida Python Challenge

Python hunters Nicholas Banos and Leonardo Sanchez wrangled a 15-foot python Saturday

THE EVERGLADES- It's a catch that may bring on some nightmares: two python hunters, capturing a massive python in the Everglades over the weekend.

Since the snake Banos and Sanchez caught was 15-feet long, they'll receive a payday of $325 for this catch.

The 25 hunters will continue scouring the Florida Everglades for Burmese pythons until June.

"I started to try to pull it so it wouldn't go into the water, and the snake just turns straight around and beelines toward my face", Banos said. "And when we jumped at it, he goes and grabs it by the tail, the second, he starts to grab it, the snake starts to bee line into the trees, so he tells me, 'Go for the head, go for the head'".

Banos and Sanchez were among 25 people who were picked and commissioned by the South Florida Water Management District to hunt down Burmese pythons in the area.

Although the hunters found the largest pythons to date, the SFWMD said Barry Oppenburger has been the most successful hunter so far, killing three snakes in the first week.

"Native animals, deer, raccoons, whatever it is, birds. they're disappearing".

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The SFWMD said he caught a 13-foot python, an 8-foot-2-inch python and a 6-foot-8-inch python for a total bounty of $550.

Snake hunter Donna Kalil agreed.

"I'm trying to get into the trees because it's all over the place".

But for Banos and Sanchez, it wasn't all satisfying.

Banos said he wanted to shoot the snake on-site so there would be less of a threat, but for Sanchez, that would mean defeat. The 135-pound kill netted the hunter $350.

The SFWMD dished out almost $2,000 to hunters for removing almost 100 feet worth of the invasive reptiles. We've never really had to do that before. "It was satisfying, but it was also a feeling of a little bit of heartbreak", Banos said.

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