Thursday, 29 April 2010

A Watchful Eye

Looking out the back of my shadehouse I noticed Mrs Python keeping an eye on things in the morning sun. This is the Amethystine Python, Morelia amethistina. Australia has the greatest diversity of python species. This species is one of the 5 largest snakes in the world with some whoppers being as much as 8m (28 ft!). These are rare and probably very old when found. Pythons resemble the Boas of the New World but differ in several respects. For one, they lay eggs, boas have live babies. Mrs Python incubates the eggs and using shivering techniques to keep them warm.

This individual is a big one, about 3-5m long. It has been out on a pile of dead branches for several mornings. It lives in the hollow bole of an adjacent tree. We hope she does something to reduce rat numbers as these rodents cause a great deal on inconvenience with their house-keeping under the bonnets of cars parked overnight.

5 comments:

Ted C. MacRae said...

3-5 meters is lot of snake! Do pythons ever attack pets?

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Dave,
Your Python has a few suspicious "bumps" along the mid-body.
Probably read your mind, re pesky Rats.
Denis

randomtruth said...

When I was up in the Daintree, we commonly saw pythons along the side of the road at night, but I could never get the tour driver to stop. She's say: "oh - those are all over the place - why would you wanna waste time for them?"

Next trip I'm renting a car.

Mr. Smiley said...

Dear All:

Yes, maybe this python has had an encounter or two with a nasty White-tailed.

Sounds like a crazy tour driver who wont;s stop to let folks see a large snake. Most of those folks are 80% incorrect on what they tell the tourists. I've heard some real corkers over the years.

Pythons have been involved in downing small dogs and cats and pet ducks, geese and chickens. We never seen cats in the rainforest and it might be owing to pythons or, more likely, to the paralytic ticks that get them.

Thanks for responding.

DR

Camera Trap Codger said...

Good to hear everything is normal down there and you are watching your step.