Species group: Boas, Anacondas and Pythons
Other common names: White Eyed Python
Scientific name: Liasis savuensis
The Savu Python has the smallest natural range, and nearly the smallest adult size, of any python. A manageable size, beautiful iridescence, and calm demeanor has caused its popularity as a pet to soar since this “big python in a small package” was first imported into the USA in the early 1990’s. First described as a subspecies of the Macklot’s Python in 1953, most herpetologists now grant it species’ status. The Savu Python is endemic to the 10 mile x 6 mile Indonesian island of Savu (also known as Sawu), off Australia’s northwestern coast. It frequents wooded grasslands, palm thickets and thorn scrub, but has also been observed forging near the ocean shore.
Appearance / health:
The Savu Python’s most outstanding features are the brilliant iridescence of the scales, which highlights its brownish-black body color, and its noticeably-white eyes. Rusty-orange speckles cover the belly and rise up the sides. The hatchlings are quite beautiful, being a rich orange or reddish-brown in color. Few adults exceed 5 feet in length, with most topping out at 3.5 - 4.5 feet; only 3-4 other pythons are as small.
Behavior / temperament:
Savu Pythons are often relatively calm in disposition, and generally tolerate gentle handling. Like all snakes, however, they must be handled with care.
A single adult may be housed in a 30 to 55 gallon aquarium. Newspapers, cypress mulch, eucalyptus bark and similar materials may be used as substrates. A dry cave or hollow log serves well as a shelter. The enclosure’s screen lid must be secured by cage clips. Ambient temperature: 80-84 F; basking temperature: 90 F.
Droppings should be removed as they appear, and the entire terrarium should be cleaned each 1-2 weeks. The cage should be misted lightly each day.
Little is known about the diet of wild Savu Pythons, but they likely prey upon small mammals and, perhaps, ground-dwelling birds and lizards. Small food items – i.e. mice or rat pups, even for adults – are preferable to large. Except for breeding females and growing youngsters, Savu Pythons are best fed every 14 days.
Breeding activity is stimulated by a 2-3 month period of reduced temperatures (72 F by night, 82 F by day) and day-length (12 hrs.). Clutches generally contain 5-10 eggs, which may be incubated in moist vermiculite at 88-90 F for 55-65 days. Hatchlings average 11-14 inches in length.
Written by Frank Indiviglio
A Big Python in a Small Package
Topping out at 5 feet in length, this beautiful, variably-colored python is perfect for python fans who lack the space for big snakes. It also has the smallest natural range of any python – a mere 60 square miles (the 10 x 6 mile island of Sawu, or Savu, off Australia’s northwest coast) – and so is in need of captive breeding. Right now, its small size does not come with a small price tag, but hopefully that will change as more folks begin to work with them.
Savu python care follows that of most of its better-known cousins, and they are proving to be quite hardy. Adults can be housed in terrariums of at least 75 gallons in size, with an ambient temperature of 75-75 F and a basking site of 90 F..
From findiviglio Jan 21 2016 6:24PM