23-foot python swallows woman whole as she tends to her garden

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A village official said a 23-foot python swallowed a woman whole as she tended to her garden. Villagers cut the snake open and found Wa Tiba's body within. (Shutterstock)

A 23-foot python swallowed an Indonesian woman whole while she tended to her vegetable garden, according to a village official.

The village chief, known as Faris, told the Associated Press that 54-year-old Wa Tiba went missing on Thursday evening. Her family and neighbors launched a search after finding her sandals and a flashlight in her garden the next morning.

The search party encountered a bloated snake not far from her garden. They killed the animal and returned to the village, where they cut the snake open.

"When they cut open the snake's belly, they found Tiba's body still intact with all her clothes," Faris said. "She was swallowed first from her head."

Videos shared on the internet showed villagers slicing open the python's carcass to reveal the woman's body.

Reticulated pythons, which are widespread in Indonesia and other parts of Southeast Asia, grab onto their prey with dozens of sharp curved teeth and then squeeze it to death before swallowing it whole.

Reports of humans being killed by pythons are extremely rare. In the wild, they are known to eat monkeys, pigs and other mammals.

It was the second python attack on a human in Indonesia since March 2017, when a 25-year-old man was swallowed whole by a python in West Sulawesi province.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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pets-animalswild animalsu.s. & worldsnake