June 15, 2007

Penn Giant Snake Eats Kittens

One hundred years ago, explorer Colonel Percy Harrison Fawcett was sent by the Royal Geographic Society to make a thorough survey of the Rio Abuna and Acre Rivers. He encountered a Giant Snake. Today, sightings of a large serpent have stirred the media in the Midwest USA.

Giant Snakes

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Fawcett ran across his snake in 1907, as he was drifting along the Rio Negro. Fawcett shot the creature and finally examined it on the river bank where it came ashore. According to Fawcett, the snake measured 45 feet out of the water and 17 in it, for a total of 62 feet.

Dating from 1919, up through more recent sightings in 1975, a forty-foot snake was seen on the slopes of Big Top Mountain, Pennsylvania.

The 2007 reports out of Bristol, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, are of a small serpent by comparison, a 9-foot-long snake said to be on the loose, and reportedly eating several kittens. The Bucks County Giant Snake has yet to be captured.

One of the most famous Giant Snake sighting series from the USA’s Midwest was that of the “Peninsula Python” in Ohio, in 1944. The media attention of these new wave of sightings in 2007, in Pennsylvania, may soon rival the hysteria of the “Peninsula Python,” during the modern age of the Internet. Even though the chances are rather high this 2007 one is based on an escaped pet (as shown below from Indiana), watch for more news coming out of the traditionally weird Bucks County, Pennsylvania area on this great serpent.

Giant Snakes

Dated to August 11, 2006, Seth Pickett (from left), Clayton Grahm and Joey Woodruff, three Hamilton County boaters, hold the 19-foot python they discovered on the banks of the White River near Strawtown, a community north of Noblesville, Indiana. — Tim Miller / Indianapolis Star (Credit: Chad Arment)

Here is the essential details of the news out of Bucks County, Pennsylvania:

Residents have been looking for, and reporting fleeting sightings of, the snake since the headless carcass of a stray cat was found under a house last week. The next day the carcass was gone, and neighbors said a cat that was raising seven kittens under the house now has only four.

Animal control officers, police and a plumber descended on the house to try to capture the snake, which they said was most likely a boa or python.

Bristol Township officials caught a 9 1/2-foot albino Burmese python on Wednesday but it was an albino and authorities said they snake they are searching for is thought to be dark colored. The snake that was captured escaped from a vehicle and authorities found the owner. Both snakes are believed to be escaped pets.

Bart Krause, Bristol’s animal control officer, and William Kurko, his counterpart in Bristol Township, set a metal trap with a pigeon inside to lure the reptile. The pigeon’s wing was injured and the trap’s door was tripped Tuesday night [June 12, 2007], but Kurko theorized the snake was not all the way inside and pulled itself out under the door.

Thursday [June 14, 2007], with the help of a Bristol Township police officer and snake expert Steve Sonacki, the men set off canisters of fumigation fog in an unsuccessful effort to “smoke out” the snake. And a plumber threaded his remote camera in under the house, but found no sign of the reptile. – partially from “Search is on for 9-foot snake in Bristol, Bucks County,” Associated Press, June 15, 2007.


The ultimate Giant Snake of the Midwest, The Great Serpent Mound in Ohio may represent a giant snake swallowing an egg.

For more on this topic, see the Chapter 8, “Giant Snakes” in Mysterious America (2007), and recent postings here: Snakes on Plains and Snakes on Plains – Part Deux.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

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