It is small to be a
is beautiful bright green
(juveniles are either yellow or reddish brown), and it is often seen on
photos in its favourite, coiled
position with the head in the middle of the coil.
It is also found in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, but in Australia it
is only found in some eastern
rainforests of Cape York.
possible to see if you go spotlighting
night time, and
it is a harmless snake.
It is not the same as
the (also harmless) green
that is also found elsewhere in Australia and is a colubrid snake.
What Does a Green Tree Python
other countries you
could mistake them for some other species, but in Australia they are unmistakeable.
Their large head,
from the neck, is clearly different from the small head of a green tree
Their body is also very different - not as smooth and slender, and triangular in cross section.
Their colour is bright
with yellow shades, and some have white
markings on the back. Juveniles are brown or yellow.
They are one of the
usually about 1.5 metres long and weighing not more than about 1.5 kg.
Their favourite resting position on top of all that - loosely coiled in a saddle, with
in the middle - makes them impossible to mistake for any
Where Is It Found?
Their primary location is Papua
Island and the d’Entrecasteaux Islands), but they are also found in Indonesia (Salawati, Misool, Schouten
In Australia, it is endemic to some small pockets of rainforest of Cape
It is accessible, and the snakes are possible to spot - the best way is
to go spotlighting night
when they are actively hunting and getting around.
The photos on this page are of a green tree python that I saw right
next to the road into the park, about
a metre above the ground on shrub branches - apparently a
common height to see them.
But they can also be seen in
where they often rest, coiled, day time.
What Does It Eat?
some other pythons
that favour other reptiles, green
tree pythons focus on small mammals,
like ground dwelling mice and rats, which they catch striking from tree
branches above as the unaware prey walks past them on the ground.
But they do take small
and juveniles particularly like small reptiles and frogs.
They were previously thought to also eat birds, but some
studies have shown
no evidence of birds in their stomach content.
Like all pythons they are non
venomous, and they kill their prey by coiling around it and suffocating it,
after having caught
it using their long, curved teeth.
sometimes also play the
favourite trick of death adders, using the tip of their tail as a lure,
mimicking a worm and attracting the prey into grabbing distance.
Green tree pythons are oviparous,
which means that their eggs develop outside the body of the female.
Up to 25 eggs
are laid in a
tree hollow, then protected and incubated.
The eggs hatch after about seven weeks, and hatchlings are yellow or reddish
Once they are about a year old, their
colour changes to emerald green. The colour change is
take about five to ten days.
Threats to this Beautiful
Their largest threat is that their habitat
historically has, and in some places still is, being destroyed.
Get this 50 pages guide totally for FREE. It
contains information that helps you getting started with planning of your trip.
You get to make early-stages desicions such as when to go, how long time you
should take, how to get
there and get
to stay (general info), what
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and a short insight to what is there to see and do in Cape York.
This complete 300 pages
travel guide is all you need before and during your trip. Besides the
background chapters on the peninsula's history and wildlife; and the comprehensive detail about all the places (down to prices, opening hours and full contact detail), it has invaluable information on at least 10 four wheel drive tracks, at least 30 guaranteed FREE camping spots on the Cape (and at least 150 on your way to the Cape), at least 40 best swimming holes, all mapped; as well as practical things - from fuel, roads, wireless internet and mobile phone reception, how to deal with the national parks booking rules; and Aboriginal land entrance and camping permits and alcohol restrictions - to vehicle preparation and accessories and necessary recovery gear by my partner Mark who is the recovery guy on northern Cape York and the Old Telegraph Track). Not to mention locals' tips on how to spot that croc and palm cockatoo ;-)
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