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In Indonesia, a seven-meter python swallowed a woman

Non-venomous pythons generally prefer to feed on small animals.  But snake experts say human hunting has increased in Indonesia.

Non-venomous pythons generally prefer to feed on small animals. But snake experts say human hunting has increased in Indonesia.

A photo: EAST NEWS

The family of 54-year-old Jahra panicked when the woman did not return home after work in the evening. The husband went to the rubber plantation in search of her and found the jacket, scarf and sandals of his missing wife on the bedding. The woman herself literally disappeared. The man contacted the police. In the morning, the search party began to comb the reeds and the forest and found a “grossly bloated” seven-meter python. There were suspicions that he was involved in the disappearance of Jahra. The reptile was killed, and her stomach was opened, and indeed the remains of the missing person were found.

“The body of the victim was not destroyed when we found her inside the snake, which means that she was swallowed whole quite recently,” police said in the Indonesian province of Jambi, located on the island of Sumatra.

Non-venomous pythons generally prefer to feed on small animals. But snake experts say human hunting has increased in Indonesia as humans constantly encroach on the reptile’s habitat. Deforestation deprives them of their food sources. Most often, the attack occurs in the evening or at night on rubber and cocoa plantations in Sumatra and Sulawesi. The length of the smallest python, which began to hunt people, is a little more than five meters.

“They are constrictors, so they wrap their body around you. They will give you the embrace of death. You breathe in and your body gets smaller, it tightens its grip and you can’t breathe out. The upper and lower jaws of the snake are connected by ligaments, it is quite flexible. They can swallow prey larger than their head size,” Nathan Rusli, director of the Indonesian Herpetofauna Foundation, told The Washington Post.

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