If you are looking to keep a snake from Asia as a pet, then why not take a look at the Bornean short-tailed pythons. Endemic to the island of Borneo, this snake has gained popularity all over the world due to how easy it is to handle domestic-bred specimens. However, be careful of specimens that have been caught in the wild. They can get really aggressive with their keepers and handlers. Known for their characteristic short tails, these pythons come in a variety of different colors. There are some breeders who breed lighter-colored variants of this snake. While they usually inhabit swamps and marshes where there are humid conditions, they seem to do well when kept in enclosures and cages. Yet, be careful to not confuse the specimen with other similar snakes such as the red short-tailed python. If you are indeed looking forward to having this snake as a pet, it is imperative that you know all that there is to know about it. So, read on to learn more about this species.
The Borneo python (Python breitensteini) is the only species of python that is endemic to the South Asian island of Borneo. This is also known as the Borneo short-tailed python or the blood python. However, it is often confused with the Python brongersmai which goes by the similar moniker of blood python.
What class of animal does a Borneo Python belong to?
Borneo short-tailed pythons (Python breitensteini) belong to the class of the Reptilia or reptiles. These pythons were initially thought to be a subspecies of Sumatran short-tailed pythons or black blood pythons (Python curtus) and went by the scientific name of Python curtus breitensteini. However, they were deemed as a separate species of blood pyth0ns.
How many Borneo Pythons are there in the world?
While they are found in abundance in the wild, the total number of wild Borneo short-tailed pythons is yet to be estimated. The same can be said for other types of short-tailed pythons in the area like the Sumatran short-tailed blood pythons and Brongersma's blood pythons.
Where does a Borneo Python live?
The Borneo short-tailed python (Python breitensteini) lives in the tropical rainforests regions. They are found in swampy lands, marshes. In a manner similar to the blood python, these snakes are also found near farms. As the name suggests, Borneo short-tailed pythons are endemic to the island of Borneo. However, they have also been found in other nearby islands. Due to their uniqueness, the Borneo short-tailed python has made its way into countries around the world, where they are kept in enclosures and zoos. Both adults and juveniles are a star attraction at many places due to their calmness.
What is a Borneo Pythons' habitat?
Borneo short-tailed python (Python breitensteini), which is very similar to the Sumatran short-tailed python and the blood python, has specific habitats that are suited for its survival. These snakes have a certain temperature range which is ideal for them. During the day, this short-tailed python can survive at a temperature around 85 degrees Fahrenheit, while the nighttime temperature shouldn't drop below 80 degrees Fahrenheit. These temperatures which have a difference of five to seven degrees are important for the skin shedding of the snake. Humidity is another factor that determines the shedding of these snakes. If you are keeping them captive in cages, make sure to regulate the temperatures with the proper substrate. The substrate is important as it affects the humidity inside the cages. Whenever temperatures and humidity levels are not optimum, these snakes will have problems in shedding.
The heavy-bodied Borneo pythons is not a climber. Python breitensteini, like blood pythons, are terrestrial animals who hunt for their food and feed on land. As a result, there haven't been any reports of the snake species being spotted at more than 1000ft from sea level. However, these snakes are not diurnal. Wild-caught adults have been observed to stay hidden during the day in burrows and only come out during the night for feeding.
Who does Borneo Python live with?
This reptile, like most of the other snakes, has been known to live alone. Adults only proactive to seek companionship during the breeding season. They are known to feed and shed on their own.
How long does a Borneo Python live?
The Borneo blood python has a lifespan that ranges between 20 to 30 years in captivity. However, when the snakes are not in captivity, they are prone to have a shorter lifespan owing to several diseases related to shedding and more.
How do they reproduce?
Python breitensteini snakes are oviparous in nature. This means that the snakes give birth to eggs that hatch after they have been incubated. It has been noted that the Borneo python breeding season coincides with the period between November and March, both in the wild and in captive environments. While a lot is not known about the reproduction and mating of this snake, what we do know is that female adults will shed around 20 days after the period of ovulation. Once the skin of adult females has been shed, the clutch of eggs will be laid. The average clutch produced by adult females consists of 12-16 eggs, however, there have cases where the females have produced around 30 eggs. After the females lay their eggs, they are incubated for 60 days. Once the incubation period is over, hatchlings are born. These hatchlings grow up and become sexually mature at the age of 18 months. Some juveniles also reach an average length of hatchlings varies between 8-12 in (20-30cm).
What is their conservation status?
Even though this snake species has been listed under the category of Least Concern by the International Union For Conservation Of Nature, there have been concerns about its populations. The main threat to these reptiles is deforestation and skin trading. However, the one saving grace is the fact these snakes have adapted to artificial structures and plantations, and farms.
Borneo Python Fun Facts
What do Borneo Pythons look like?
The first thing that will strike you about this snake is the fact that it has a short tail. This short tail is mostly attributed to their name of Borneo short-tailed pythons. The short tail is also a defining feature in the Sumatran short-tailed python and the blood python. Apart from this, the head of the snake is usually broad. The head is known to contain thermo-receptive pits. The color and the pattern of the body vary. A thin straight line can be seen on the top of the head. The rest of the body is covered with blotches. The coloration on the body varies from deep brown, tan to some lighter variations. Usually, these reptiles have brown blotches on them. Hatchlings have the same colorations as adults while juveniles are known to have a yellow coloration on the head.
How cute are they?
While they do not fit the general convention of being cute and adorable, some may find the beautifully patterned body and the short, tapering tail of this snake to be cute. Captive-bred adult snakes are known to be easy to handle and this may some people keeping this snake as a pet.
How do they communicate?
Pythons in general communicate through producing pheromones and vibrations. These modes of communication help them to understand where others of their own species are and also if there any kinds of threats or animals nearby. Python breitensteini is no different in this regard.
How big is a Borneo Python?
The short-tailed python group consists mainly of the Python breitensteini, the Python brongersmai, and the Python curtus. In terms of length, the Python breitensteini falls in the middle. Females of this species grow bigger than males. The average length of the females ranges between 4-6 ft (120-180cm). Males, on the other hand, range from 3-4 ft (90-120cm). There have been reports of these snakes growing up to 7ft in length. The snakes that do grow that much are almost always females. In comparison, the reticulated python, which is the largest of all pythons, is around four times bigger than the Bornean variant.
How fast can a Borneo Python move?
Pythons, in general, are not to move around very fast. Most pythons, including this Bornean species, have an average speed of not more than a mile per hour. Yet, this slow speed does not come as a disadvantage for this reptile population. This is due to the simple fact that pythons do not chase their food for feeding.
How much does a Borneo Python weigh?
The Bornean short-tailed python is a heavy-bodied snake. Females are usually bigger than males. While female snakes may exceed over 30lb (13 kg), the weight of the majority of snakes belonging to this species is limited to 20 to 30lb (13-18 kg).
What are the male and female names of the species?
There no distinct names for the male and female Bornean pythons. They are simply called male and female pythons.
What would you call a baby Borneo Python?
A Borneo python baby is generally known as hatchlings. When they start growing up, they are called juveniles.
What do they eat?
Being constrictors, all pythons bite their prey and then constrict them using their body. In the wild, Bornean pythons feed on rats and other rodents. In captivity, many snake keepers have reported that while young ones can be given live food, adults will also readily accept food that is not alive. Thus, feeding the captive snake is not an issue.
Are they poisonous?
Pythons, including this particular reptile, are not poisonous. They feed by ambushing their prey when they are within striking distance.
Would they make a good pet?
These pythons are becoming increasingly popular enclosure animals and pets. This is due to the fact that many captive-born snakes are easy to handle for keepers and have a calm nature. However, the opposite is true for wild pythons. They can be quite aggressive with humans.
If you are indeed keeping them as pets, then you should probably maintain a care sheet for your pet. Keeping them in large wooden cages should be ideal. The temperature and the humidity of the cages should be well monitored. If there are above or below the prescribed range, the python may face health issues. The substrate of the tank also affects the humidity, which in turn helps the snake shed its skin. Many experts suggest that in terms of feeding, a meal every 14 days is good enough for these constrictors.
Did you know...
If you are breeding a captive snake, then all feeding must be stopped before the commencement of the mating season in November.
There is a special type of designer eel called the Borneo python eel. There are named as such because the pattern on their bodies closely resembles the Borneo pythons.
How many different pythons are there?
There are 43 different species of pythons in the Pythonidae family that are distributed over 11 different genera.
Is their venom dangerous?
No, the pythons do not have venom in them and as such, their venom is not dangerous or fatal to human beings.
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other reptiles including king cobra facts and boa facts.
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