INVERSA Leathers sponsored the $10,000 grand prize award for Florida’s 2023 Python Challenge, an annual 10-day event that tasks participants with humanely removing as many Burmese pythons from the Everglades as possible.
Taking place August 4–13, the contest aimed to complete the same mission as the company. Founded in 2020 by three avid scuba divers, INVERSA focuses on removing invasive species populations introduced by humans, such as Burmese pythons, and repurposing them.
INVERSA offers three lines of Invasive™ Leather—Lionfish Leather, Dragonfin Leather and Python Leather—each made of a different invasive species.
Lionfish Leather was the first Invasive Leather created. Lionfish is an invasive species that has destroyed coral reefs across the Atlantic Ocean, from the Caribbean to the Mediterranean Sea.
Removing these fish helps to restore coral reefs in the Gulf of Mexico, an area where they run rampant.
INVERSA’s Dragonfin Leather makes use of grass carp, a fish species with an appetite for plants so strong they can damage and destroy habitats of native species, while its Python Leather utilizes Burmese pythons.
For each line of leather, there are two finishes available with five stock colors to choose from. Custom coloring is also available.
The company works directly with divers and hunters to source each hide and utilizes only chemicals approved by the U.K.’s Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals agency and ESG+ practices to create less wastewater than traditional leather manufacturing.
Participants must complete training before the event to learn the basics of humane methods for killing pythons, how to identify native and non-native snakes, and how to properly conserve the land.
Participants compete as either a novice or professional, with separate prizes awarded in each category. Veterans and active military members also receive special recognition and additional prizes.
The grand prize winner will receive $10,000 courtesy of INVERSA. The runner-up will receive $7,500 donated by the Bergeron Everglades Foundation.