Letters to the Editor

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CLIMATE: Our winters too cold for pythons

Letter by Ken A. Schlichte, Tumwater on Jan. 17, 2012 at 11:18 am | 22 Comments »
January 17, 2012 1:45 pm

The Burmese pythons now in Florida will cross many state lines and become established in Washington and Oregon by 2100 if temperatures continue to rise, according to a federal study. And Congressman Norm Dicks says that it’s time to make sure that no more of these snakes are allowed to enter the United States or to cross state lines (TNT, 1-16).

The writers of this federal python study, Dicks and perhaps even those Burmese pythons in Florida need to be informed of the NOAA National Climatic Data Center reports indicating that our Northwest winter temperatures have actually been trending downward rapidly at a rate of 1.63 degrees F per decade during the 14 winters since 1997 and that the average Northwest winter temperature during this 14-winter period was slightly below freezing at 31.72 degrees F.

The NOAA center reports describing these recent downward trending and freezing Northwest winter temperatures provide very little support for the spread of those Burmese pythons from Florida into Washington and Oregon.

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