Pythons may soon be on the menu in Florida if scientists confirm they are safe to be eaten.
The invasive Burmese python specie is being investigated to see if mercury levels in it make the reptile safe for human consumption.
The move is part of the Python Elimination Program which is designed to get the predatory species out of the Everglades where it poses a serious risk to native wildlife.
The study is being carried out by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in collaboration with the Florida Department of Health. If the snakes are deemed safe, they could be the latest addition to meals across the state.
Pythons are nonvenomous constrictors, located primarily in south Florida, where they were likely introduced as escaped or released pets three decades ago.
The study is still in its early stages, further delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.