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Carpet Python

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3.9/5

(17 Reviews)


Is the Carpet Python right for you?

Species group:

Other common names: Northern Territory Carpet Python; Darwin Carpet Python; Torresian Carpet Python; Irian Jaya Carpet Python

Scientific name: Morelia spilota variegata

The basics:
The exceedingly-attractive Carpet Python is a great choice for constrictor fans who wish to try a larger but not enormous species. Generally calm and easy to handle, they breed readily and may live for 20 or more years in captivity.

This widest-ranging of all of Australia’s many pythons inhabits virtually the entire continent, with the exception of southern Victoria and the central and western deserts. It is also found in southern New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. Seven subspecies have been described.

Carpet Pythons are very adaptable and seem equally at home in moist forests, thorn scrub, rocky hillsides, brushy grasslands, farms, and city parks.

Appearance / health:
The coloration and markings are extremely variable. The background color ranges from black through various shades of gray, reddish-brown, green and blue-green, and the pattern may be in the form of flecks, bands, spots or an irregular network of markings, and may be white, yellow, gold, gray or rust in color. Breeders have produced an astonishing array of color and pattern morphs. Adult size varies greatly from 4-9 feet, with occasional specimens to 13 feet.

The Carpet Python is, when given proper care, a very hardy snake, and may reach age 20+. Like other pythons, be subject to mites, inclusion body disease, and other ailments.

Behavior / temperament:
Carpet Pythons are often calm in disposition, and usually tolerate gentle handling. Like all snakes, they will bite when distressed, and must be handled with care. Large adults are not suitable pets for children.

Housing:
Hatchlings may be housed in 10 gallon aquariums, while sub-adults do well in 55 gallon tanks. Commercial or custom built snake enclosures are best for large adults.

Stout, well-anchored branches or shelves work well as basking sites, and a hide box should always be available. Newspapers, terrarium liners, or aspen bedding may be used as the substrate. An ambient temperature gradient of 72-85 F, and a basking site of 90-95 F, should be established.

Diet:
Carpet Pythons fare well on a diet of mice and rats.

Breeding:
Successful breeders reduce the night-time temperature to 65-70 F and the light cycle to 10 hours as autumn arrives; daytime temperatures remain unchanged. Males are introduced to females’ enclosures at this time. Temperatures are returned to normal in 3-6 weeks. Clutch size ranges from 10-60 eggs. The incubation period is 65-70 days at 86-90 F and 95-100% humidity. The hatchlings average 16-20 inches long upon hatching.

Written by Frank Indiviglio

wonderful

fantastic species, different colour mutations, Gentle Giants, larger snakes

challenging

bite, antibiotic shots, mouth rot, teeth, large enclosure

interesting

semi aboreal, high perches, gentle handling

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