The state agency overseeing Everglades restoration projects plans to pay people to kill Burmese pythons in the wetlands.
The South Florida Water Management District said in a statement Thursday that 25 people will be selected for a 60-day pilot program that aims to remove the invasive predators from state-owned lands.
Officials say pythons are decimating populations of native Florida mammals, which deprives panthers, alligators, bobcats and birds of their primary food source in the Everglades.
U.S. & World
Starting April 1, participants will be given special access to python-infested district property in Miami-Dade County. They'll be paid minimum wage ($8.10) up to eight hours each day, plus $50 per python. They'll receive extra money for snakes measuring longer than 4 feet and for eliminating python nests with eggs.
To be eligible for the job, applicants must be at least 18 years of age, have a valid driver's license and email address, posess a smart phone that can be tracked through GPS, have not been convicted of a felony or wildlife-related offense within the last five years, and must submit to a criminal background check.
Participants are allowed to use firearms to remove pythons, said South Florida Water Management District.
Registration begin Friday at https://www.sfwmd.gov/our-work/python-program