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Black-headed Python

A Black-headed Python coiled on the ground

Scientific Name: Aspidites melanocephalus

Size: TL 2.5m

What does it look like?

The Black-headed Python is a moderately sized, smooth-scaled python, with cylindrical body and head similar in thickness to neck. Cream, yellowish or light brown, with irregular reddish to dark brown or blackish transverse bands, occasionally with small blotches in between. Head and neck glossy black, with head lacking heat-sensory pits. Belly yellow with darker blotches.

Where is it found?

Northern Australia, from east to west coasts, including north-western WA, northern and eastern NT, and central and northern Qld.

What are its habitats & habits?

The Black-headed Python, or Black-headed Rock Python, is found in wet and dry forests, woodland, shrubland and grassland with rocky outcrops or cracking soils, where it shelters during the day in disused animal burrows or ones it digs itself. Although terrestrial, a capable climber and also able to swim to avoid danger. Feeds mainly on snakes, including venomous species, and other reptiles, supplemented with some mammals and birds. Prey generally ambushed and killed by constriction. Non-venomous and harmless to humans, but if disturbed may hiss and strike with closed mouth. Oviparous, laying up to 18 eggs in a clutch.

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A Naturalist's Guide to the Reptiles of Australia (2nd Edition) cover

This species features in my book A Naturalist’s Guide to the Reptiles of Australia

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