Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Boidae

Genus/species: Python reticulatus

Albino Reticulated Python  6196134316_755d730e34_b

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Largest species of python.  The giant South American Anaconda may grow  heavier ( 29 feet long & 550 pounds), but the longest snake in the world is the reticulated pythons (33 feet). Normally colored reticulated pythons have several pigments: melanin (blacks), and xanthins (yellows) amongst other more subtle colors. Lemondrop is a “lavender albino” which is the same thing as a “tyrosinase positive albino” (t-positive) which have the inability to complete the synthesis of melanin but can produce other melanin related pigments such as various shades of brown grey and red resulting the “lavender” color. A “normal albino” (t-negative) reticulated python is yellow and white with pink/red eyes. Melanin and other melanin pigments areas are pure white but non-melanin pigments are present giving alternate colors (xanthines produce yellows). To make matters more complicated different albino snakes may have mutations giving them additional color morphs.
Our albino American Alligator, (Claude) Alligator mississippiensis is a “normal albino” (t-negative) with no melanin or non-melanin pigments making him pure white. If you google “t-positive albino” or “tyrosinase positive albino” you can find more information on this condition. (Albino Appearance Ref. Nicole Chaney Biologist II, California Academy of Sciences for basic albino information).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Reticulated pythons can be found throughout Southeast Asia. Their range includes the Nicobar Islands, Burma through Indochina, and Borneo, Sulawesi, Ceram and Timor in the Malay archipelago. Found in steamy tropical rainforests near small rivers or ponds in tropical environments.

Albino Reticulated Python,  Python reticulatus  IMG_0184

DIET IN THE WILD   P. reticulatus is strictly carnivorous typically feeding on birds and mammals. This diet extends however to dogs, large deer, pigs and very rarely humans. Usually ambush predators, waiting in trees for unsuspecting prey.  They use their 100 curved teeth to capture their prey by biting then holding prey and they kill  by wrapping around them and squeezing them until the prey is unable to breath and its heart is unable to pump blood swallowing them whole.  The entire animal is digested in the snake’s stomach except for fur or feathers, which are passed with the snakes waste.

REPRODUCTION   Lays 25-80 eggs and guards nest but not hatched young.

REMARKS  Reticulated Pythons are heavily sold for their skin and meat. Also tourists visiting these areas often buy materials made from these snakes.
The largest P. reticulatus ever caught was 33 feet long in 1912 in Indonesia. The largest in captivity was from Thailand reaching a length of 28½ feet long with a girth of 37.5 inches and  weighed apron. 320 pounds.

This specimen below is a male, 14.5 ft long 60 lbs, 6 yrs old (6-22-12).

Albino Reticulated Python IMG_0182

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