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Spotted python

Antaresia maculosa

Outher Common Names: None in common use, though occasionally this species is incorrectly referred to as a Childrens python (Antaresia childreni), which is of tropical Northern Australia west of Cape York, Queensland, including some offshore islands.

Overview:

This is a great little python that thrives in captivity and can be cage mates with others. It has been well-established in U.S. collections for a while. They are docile and fun to work with, and they are a great species for new python keepers to learn the basics of captive-breeding.

Light gray or tan with darker saddles and mottling, the head somewhat wider than the neck. Most specimens are boldly patterned with dark dorsal and lateral blotches. The blotches tend to be irregularly-shaped and ragged-edged. There is a pattern mutation referred to as "speckled" or "granite" in which the body is covered with tiny dark speckles. They have a small adult size on average 30" to 40". They are a easy to breed species. This is a popular, gentle, and very affordable Australian python.

These animals are usually nocturnal in captivity, however daytime activity is not uncommon during the winter and colder months. Spotted pythons will accept food at any time throughout the day (this may also be dependant on the individual animal). Neonates should be handled with care as they are small and can be delicate, one must take care when manipulating the tail. The best way to handle a Spotted python is to simply offer yourself as a "perch" and let the snake find its own spot.

Distribution:

The east coast of Queensland, and nearby areas, including offshore islands, nearby highlands and slopes and north-east New South Wales.

Habitat:

They mainly live in heavily forested areas. Live plants will help them thrive. Adult Spotted pythons will do fine being housed in enclosures approximately the size of a 20-gallon aquaria or larger. Provide a suitable hiding box and a water dish large enough for soaking with clean water at all times.

Temperatures:

a heat gradient between 75 and 85 degrees F. during the day with a basking site of about 90 to 100 degrees F. will work very well for most specimens. Make sure that you maintain the temperature gradient so that your snake can find a cool spot if necessary. At night you can turn off the basking light and let the temp. drop to 70 degree with a hot spot of around 80 degrees F..

Feeding:

In the wild Spotted Pythons have a wide variety of prey animals. For adults this includes mice and small lizards. Hatchlings will feed on pinky mice.

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