Biting off more than it could chew cost a 20-foot python its life in Junagadh district. The python died yesterday after swallowing a blue bull (‘nilgai’) at Baliavad village near Gir wildlife sanctuary, a Gujarat forest department official said. Villagers found the python lying on the road, its belly distended beyond normal capacity, and apparently struggling to digest the animal it had swallowed. “Forest officials were informed and they rushed to the site to ascertain its condition,” Deputy Conservator of Forest R Senthilkumaran said today.
“It succumbed to the internal injuries caused by the (swallowing of) blue bull,” he said. Pythons swallow their prey whole, and take several days or even weeks to fully digest it. They are known to prey on animals much larger in size. After eating, a python can go several weeks, if not months, without needing to feed again.
Reportedly, A farmer who first noticed this, informed the authorities of the Girnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Junagadh, through a telephonic message.
“Python roams around the wildlife sanctuary and they could rarely be seen. We got a telephonic message of a farmer that a python has swallowed a big animal. We sent a rescue team immediately and found that a python has swallowed a blue bull,” said Assistant Conservator of Forest S.D. Tilala.
“It was 18-20 feet long. We have transported the animal to some other place so that it does not injure other people. We will keep it under observation. When it will digest the blue bill, we will release the python in the forest,” he added.