In June 2018, Wa Tiba, an Indonesian woman left her village, Persiapan Lawela. She went to her garden which was located about a half a mile from her house. Tiba was planning to check on the garden because wild boars often destroyed its crops. But, she didn’t return.
The next day, Tiba’s sister went looking for her but she only found some of her belongings such as her machete, flashlight, and her sandals. The village then launched a search effort with about 100 locals to no avail. What they discovered was a 23-foot reticulated python with a bloated stomach near Tiba’s things. “Residents were suspicious the snake swallowed the victim, so they killed it, then carried it out of the garden,” said the local police chief, identified as Hamka.
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All That’s Interesting, a site for curious people who want to know more about what they saw on the news or read in history books, reported that the villagers carried the python and sliced it open. What they found shocked them all: the extracted body of Tiba. The woman was found dead, fully intact, and swallowed whole. The incident was surprising because pythons eating humans are rare. They usually kill and eat creatures about a quarter of their own sizes, such as monkeys and pigs.
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Max Nickerson from the Florida Museum of Natural History stated that reticulated pythons sink their large jaws into their victims and coil around them until blood flow stops when they kill. According to National Geographic, an American pay television network and flagship channel, Scott Boback, a vertebrate ecologist at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, stated that the species is an ambush predator.
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“An ambush predator like a reticulated python will use its tongue for chemosensation. They'll find areas in which a prey animal walked past back and forth. They detect those chemicals and might set up an ambush along that path,” Boback said.