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Python swallows Indonesian woman: reports

By NICK GARCIA Published Oct 28, 2022 1:22 pm

Truth is stranger than fiction indeed. A woman from Indonesia was killed and swallowed whole by a python—in the manner of the 1997 cult classic Anaconda.

BBC reported that Jahrah, who's in her 50s, was on her way to work at a rubber planation in Jambi province on the island of Sumatra on Sunday, Oct. 23.

According to local police, her husband said she didn't return home that night. Looking for his wife, the husband found her sandals, headscarf, jacket, and the tools she used at work. He then called for others to help.

A day later, villagers found a python with what appeared to be a large stomach, BBC reported.

They killed the snake, reportedly seven meters (approximately 23 feet) long, and alas, found Jahrah inside.

"We found the victim’s body in the snake’s stomach,” police chief AKP S Harefa told local news website Detik, as quoted by The Guardian.

Pythons are constrictors; they kill their prey by suffocating them. Pythons swallow their food whole, as their jaws are connected by flexible ligaments and can stretch around large prey. They typically eat rats.

Though cases of pythons swallowing humans are rare, it's not the first time that it happened in Indonesia.

The Guardian reported that in 2018, a woman was found to have been swallowed by a python on Muna island. A year before, it was a farmer who fell prey to a python on Sulawesi island.

Mary-Ruth Low, a former official at the Singapore-based Mandai Wildlife Group, previously told BBC that once pythons reach a certain size, "it's almost like they don't bother with rats anymore because the calories are not worth it."

Low said pythons can, in essence, go as large as their prey goes, including pigs or cows.