Filed under: Prank Busters, Urban Legends
From Joe King: Apparently the python-swallows-drunk tale has appeared in various permutations here there and everywhere
‘Python Eats Drunk Man in India’ Most Likely a Hoax; Media Outlets Fooled
by Jack Phillips
November 28, 2013
An article titled “Python Eats Drunk Man in India” is a hoax, according to a report.
David Emery with About.com wrote that the photo, which shows a python with a large object inside of it as people stand nearby, has been around for at least two years.
“Depending on which version of the story you read, the overstuffed python above swallowed a drunk guy in India, an unknown woman in South Africa, an unknown man in Qujing, China, a person of unknown gender in Indonesia, or a 4-year-old child in Malaysia,” he wrote.
He said that while it is unclear what the python ate–it could be a human–the photo “more likely than not documents a python digesting a goat or a deer.”
The most recent version of the article that’s getting play on social media is located on the http://lordsofthedrinks.wordpress.com website. “When you drink hard, you might find yourself waking up in very strange places. However in some countries it’s quite risky to drink till you drop. A drunk man in India was taking a well-deserved nap outside a liquor store today, when he was discovered by a huge python,” it reads.
No credible media entities have covered the incident.
But the Russian state-run website Pravda, which was the Communist Party mouthpiece for decades, covered the story. “The incident occurred in the state of Kerala, in the south-west of the country. The drunk man was peacefully sleeping near the shop, when the python approached him, strangled the man and swallowed him whole,” it said, without citing any source for its information.
As the Daily Mail points out, a 20-foot-long python in Durban, South Africa, ate a 10-year-old boy in 2002. And a month ago, a Burmese python ate two cats in Florida. In 2011, an adult python swallowed an entire deer in Everglades National Park, located in Florida.
Burmese pythons–native to Southeast Asia–were introduced to Florida over the past few decades, as they are a popular exotic animal. They have thrived in the South Florida climate, and state officials eventually declared them an invasive species. Officials believe that as many as 180,000 Burmese pythons live in the Everglades.
In May, the longest Burmese python was captured in Florida, coming in at a massive 19 feet in length. The snake weighed 128 pounds.