Children’s Python

The Children’s Python (Antaresia childreni), is a non-venomous python found in Australia. It is found mainly in the extreme north of Western Australia, the northern third of Northern territory, and in northeastern Queensland. It is also found on the islands of the Torres Strait. It was named in honor of John George Children, who was a curator of the zoological collection at the
British Museum around that time. No subspecies are currently recognized.

Adults grow to about 30 inches in length with a maximum of 39 inches. The crown scales are enlarged while those on the body are small and smooth, with a rainbow sheen that can be seen when exposed to direct sunlight. The diet consists of reptiles, birds and small bats. It catches bats by dangling from stalactites in caves and snatches them as they fly by.

Children’s Pythons are oviparous and lay up to 25 eggs. Female brood their eggs through a seven week incubation period by coiling around them and occasionally shivering to keep them warm, which also affords the eggs some protection from predators. The young are heavily blotched, but gradually become reddish brown or brown as they mature. In captivity, these snakes can live up to 30 years.

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