Hallucinatory Visions in the Everglades

Florida is both terrifying and magical, and Balarama Heller has the photos to prove it.

Slithering on the floor of the Everglades, is a menace who missed an opportunity to be the star of an intriguing photo series in the New Yorker. Balarama Heller attempted to photograph the Burmese python- an invasive species that is destroying the fauna in the Everglades– with the help of herpetologists, but the encounter never occurred. Instead, the native species and habitat that the python is destroying were the subject of the series, leaving the viewer with a spine chilling fear of what’s around the corner.
Burmese pythons are a non-indigenous species that were introduced to the Everglades by snake owners who tired of caring for the enormous snakes. Since their introduction, they have ravaged the Everglades. Alligators and humans are the main predators of the snake, but neither predator has been able to contain the enormous population of the python.

This is why Heller’s photos are even more fascinating, you can feel the hunt of the destructive python, but Heller never managed to spot one. “I just had a streak of bad luck in not finding one,” he explained.

Nevertheless, the photos take us on a journey to a lesser-seen Everglades. Using a harsh flash at night on snakes is not an image that one typically sees from this South Florida tourist attraction. Gliding snakes, lizards, snake hunters, and the stare of alligators all seem to be waiting for the same thing- the slithering star who missed its chance to appear in the New Yorker. 

Read the full article at: www.newyorker.com