The largest snake on record, Titanoboa, weighed 2,500 pounds and conservatively measured 42.7 feet from its nose to tail tip.
Researchers from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and the Florida Museum of Natural History believe that warmer temperatures during Titanoboa's lifetime, 60 million years ago in South America, helped to fuel and maintain its astounding growth. The temperature was about 5 degrees warmer, on average, than it is now.
It is little wonder that Titanoboa was a top predator of its day. Now, in the Florida Everglades, an epic battle is underway.
"Alligators and Burmese pythons are duking it out for the top predator spot," said Willson, who explained that the animals eat each other.
Burmese pythons have been known to eat humans while in captivity, but probably because they mistakenly identified their owner as food (food smells can get on the person during feeding times, and snakes possess a very keen sense of smell). Burmese pythons are consuming rabbits, raccoons, possums, bobcats, deer and rodents in the Florida Everglades.