GAINESVILLE, FL - You can forget the Burmese Python. There is a new predator taking over the Florida Everglades.
Scientists say three reptiles caught near Miami in the past few years are actually Nile Crocodiles. The deadly reptiles have a dangerous reputation in their native Africa where they were responsible for almost 500 attacks on people, and more than 100 fatalities, between 2010 and 2014. The man-eating crocs can grow up to 18 feet long and weigh as much as 1,600 lbs.
A team of scientists at the University of Florida tested the reptiles' DNA to confirm they were Nile Crocs and not American Crocodiles. It even turns out the three foreign specimens are related, meaning they could have come from a common ancestor.
Experts are not sure how they ended up loose in the Everglades, but like Burmese Pythons, it is likely they were brought to the Sunshine State as exotic pets. Due to its subtropical climate, Florida has the world's largest number of invasive species.
Who can blame them? Most Americans agree that, wherever you are from, Florida is a pretty nice place to getaway.