Giant, 13-foot python spotted near Snell Isle's Vinoy Golf Club

11:00 PM, Jun 4, 2013   |    comments
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ST. PETERSBURG, Florida - Golf courses in Florida are known for their wildlife, but rarely has anyone in St. Petersburg ever seen what was spotted over the Memorial Day weekend.

"He told me ... 'Mom do you see that snake?' And I'm like 'What?'" recalls Nancy Davis. 

Davis was with her 16-year-old son, Brad, in a canoe paddling along the back side of the Vinoy Golf Club when the two spotted a giant, Burmese Python swimming along the mangroves.

"What we saw was like, eight feet out of the water and it continues on in ... I can only imagine it was 12 or 13 feet at least."

"When he shot the picture to me it was like, 'holy crap, just like in the Everglades,'" says Brad's father, who had a photo of the snake sent to him on his cell phone.

Florida Fish and Wildlife officials have confirmed the snake is a Burmese Python. A team of trappers was dispatched to the neighborhood earlier this week, prompting the HOA to issue a warning to residents.

"I did ask the gentleman, 'Was it a dangerous snake?'" says Randy Mosley, the director of golf for the Renaissance Vinoy. "He said, 'Yes, it is.' I said, 'What do you mean by that?' and he says it could take down a small teenager."

According to Mosley, the snake was last spotted near the 12th tee heading into a creek between the golf course and Snell Isle Estates.

"Those mangroves go back 50 to 80 yards, so it's a nice place for a snake to hide," says Mosley.

Since the initial sighting, many neighbors have grown uneasy.

"Well, I'm shocked! We never have anything like that here," says Marion Whalen, who says she's not afraid to even let her dog outside. "It could probably swallow him. He's only a little thing."

Others report seeing a noticeable decrease in the number of raccoons and other wildlife around the golf course.

"I think that python is just hanging out in the mangroves. It doesn't have to go far," suspects Davis. "It's all about eating!"

Follow 10 News Reporter Beau Zimmer on twitter @Zimm10

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