9 Snakes That Bit Off More Than They Could Chew

1Python eats a pregnant sheep

A fresh lamb dinner might sound like a manageable meal for an 18-foot-long (5.5-meter-long) python, but maybe the hungry snake should have waited for the animal’s offspring to be born.

In 2006, firefighters in the Malaysian village of Kampung Jabor were called in to remove the bloated snake (pictured) from a roadway. The reptile had swallowed an entire pregnant sheep and was too full to slither away and digest its supersize meal. The stress of being captured likely triggered the python to purge—it eventually regurgitated the dead ewe.


2Python found dead after swallowing a 30lb porcupine

A giant python was found lying dead next to a cycle track after swallowing a 13.8kg (30lb) porcupine, the spines of which punctured the inside of the snake.

The python, nearly four meters (around 12 and a half feet) long, died after falling from a rocky ledge in the Lake Eland Game Reserve in South Africa. The fall is believed to have forced the quills to puncture the snake’s digestive tract (though the exact cause of its death is unknown).

After the snake was reported to gamekeepers, they performed an autopsy on the animal to remove the porcupine from its innards and found the insides of the snake had been pierced by dozens of the animal’s sharps quills.


3Python bursts after eating gator

Unfortunately for a 13-foot (4-meter) Burmese python in Florida’s Everglades National Park, eating the enemy seems to have caused the voracious reptile to bust a gut—literally.

Wildlife researchers with the South Florida Natural Resources Center found the dead, headless python in October 2005 after it apparently tried to digest a 6-foot-long (2-meter-long) American alligator. The mostly intact dead gator was found sticking out of a hole in the midsection of the python, and wads of gator skin were found in the snake’s gastrointestinal tract.

The gruesome discovery suggests that the python’s feisty last meal might have been simply too much for it to handle.


4Snake fights snake for prey, is eaten instead

A rat thieving python challenges another python for his dinner but decides to eat him instead.


5Python dies after trying to swallow a pet cat whole

A huge python was killed when it tried to swallow a pet cat whole. Much-loved family pet Tiger died when the scrub python tried to eat it. The feline’s owners only found out when they saw the dead cat peeping out of the snake’s decomposing body.

Francis Bakvis was horrified when he came face to face with his sixteen-year-old cat inside the stomach of the dead snake. He discovered the bloated python in his garden after noticing a foul smell coming from the yard. It wasn’t until he tried to move the snake that he realized where his beloved pet, who had been missing for three days, had gone.


6Python eats adult deer as its last meal

(AP Photo/South Florida Water Management District)

In this Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011 photo provided by the South Florida Water Management District, workers are shown holding a nearly 16-foot long Burmese Python that was captured and killed in Everglades National Park, Fla. The Python had recently consumed a 76-lb. adult female deer. The reptile was one of the largest ever found in South Florida.


7Centipede bites its way out of snake after being eaten alive

In 2013, a young viper was found dead with a centipede’s head protruding out of the snake’s body. Ljiljana Tomovic, a Serbian herpetologist, was tagging snakes in Macedonia when she made the eye-catching discovery. While shorter in length, the 4.8 gram mass of the prey, Scolopendra cingulate, was actually greater than the 4.2 gram female nose-horned viper (Vipera ammodytes).

The find was made on May 14, 2013 and the scientist reported, “…we cannot dismiss the possibility that the snake had swallowed the centipede alive, and that, paradoxically, the prey has eaten its way through the snake, almost reaching its freedom.” Dissection showed that only the snake’s abdominal wall remained, so the centipede caused damage to the snake’s internal organs either chemically or mechanically. When found, the centipede occupied the entire volume of the viper’s body.

The viper and centipede were found on the island of Golem Grad, which is also known as “Snake Island.”


8Snake swallows electric blanket

The latest trick by Houdini the Burmese python almost proved to be his last.

Surgery was required to save the 12-foot (3.5-meter) snake when it made a meal of a queen-size electric blanket, complete with electrical cord and control box, as seen in this photo. The blanket’s wiring extended through about 8 feet (2.5 meters) of the the 60-pound (27-kilogram) reptile’s digestive tract (inset).

The blanket probably got tangled up with the snake’s rabbit dinner, owner Karl Beznoska of Ketchum, Idaho, said. Beznoska keeps the blanket in Houdini’s cage to keep the animal warm, because pythons can’t generate their own body heat.


9Snake dies after failing to digest pig

Julatten resident Neil McDougall was looking for mushrooms on his property when he discovered a dead 4.5m python. It had a very distended belly indicating it had eaten something quite large. An expert told Mr. McDougall the snake most probably died from a perforated gut due perhaps to a wallaby or a small pig’s foot cutting it.


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