Coastal Carpet Python

Identifying A Coastal Carpet Python

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Coastal Carpet Python (Morelia spilota mcdowelli)

Non-venomous and by far one of the most commonly sighted snakes on the Sunshine Coast, the coastal carpet python is often found in homes and gardens. They are a popular choice when selecting a snake breed to keep as a pet, thanks to being non-venomous, though the correct licensing and fees are required.

The coastal carpet python can grow to substantial lengths and can still be dangerous when handled incorrectly.


About the Coastal Carpet Python

Adult coastal carpet pythons are olive-green in colour and juveniles are usually found in shades of brown. They are marked by pale and dark-edged botches, stripes or cross-bands and have a cream belly.

Large, heavy-bodied and can weigh in up to 10kg, the coastal carpet python can span anywhere between 2m and 4m at maturity. They are known to be the largest snake on the Sunshine Coast, though males are typically smaller than females.

These snakes are large and heavy bodied and usually weigh up to 10kg with midbody scales ranging from 40-65 rows.


Where Can You Find the Coastal Carpet Python?

The coastal carpet python can be found in urban areas, as well as in captivity.

These snakes frequent the forest and areas near water. Carpet Pythons have the most diverse range of habitat types in Australia. This is why many residents on the Sunshine Coast can find these snakes in their gardens, garages, homes and even office spaces.


Is The Coastal Carpet Python Dangerous?

Although this species has no fangs or venom, it does have a set of around 100 small, sharp teeth which have the ability to cause substantial needle-like lacerations.

Without venom, the coastal carpet python primarily uses constriction to kill their prey.


What Does the Coastal Carpet Python Eat?

The carnivorous carpet python preys on wildlife such as wallabies, possums, birds, rats, and mice. They have also been known to eat family pets such as cats, small dogs, and pet birds.


What to do if you see a Coastal Carpet Python

The carpet python is often not bothered by human presence. It has an amazing climbing ability and can be active in both the day and night but is predominantly a nocturnal species. Avoid provoking the snake, or making it feel threatened, as it can still cause harm to you, family members and pets.

If you spot a carpet python, or suspect there may be one living in your home or garden, get in touch with our team. We operate 24/7 and can provide identification, capture and relocation services for wild snakes. To ensure your safety and the safety of your family and pets, our team always aims to assist you as soon as possible.

Snake Catchers Sunshine Coast

Our Snake Catching Process

When we’re looking for a snake, the first places we look are along the walls and under debris. Snakes try to avoid predators by moving along the walls and beneath cover. Unless they are going from concealment to cover or seeking warmth from the sun, it’s unusual to observe a snake moving out in the open. 

We study their body language once we discover the snake, before we attempt to catch it. This tells us what the snake is thinking and indicates what it might do. We can tell when they are going to run, stand up and fight, or simply be apathetic toward our presence based on their body language. It’s critical for us to understand how to capture and handle snakes using this information.

After they’ve been captured, they’re put in a bag and kept quiet in a dark, tight space. This keeps us safe while handling the snake, as well as allows the snake to calm down.

Following the capture of the snake, they are relocated to suitable bushland and set free. Each snake is assigned its own habitat and food. As a result, we release them into areas that are ideal for each species. Keelbacks and Red-bellied black snakes enjoy frogs and lizards, so we put them in areas near water sources such as rivers or dams.

During an operation, we always want to double-check the snakes for health and remove any external parasites like ticks before they are released. If the snake is not healthy enough to be released, it may be due to injury or sickness; they are taken to Australia Zoo’s wildlife hospital for further evaluation, treatment, and rehabilitation.

As snake catchers, all the snakes we catch are logged with the department of wildlife and science. This is so they can keep track of where each snake has been caught and released, to monitor and maintain the biodiversity in the area.

We have also been keeping a personal log of all the snakes we have caught on the Sunshine Coast that you can view on our website. This way you can see the species and location of each snake we have caught around the sunshine coast and in your areas.

Coastal Carpet Python

Frequently Asked Questions

Pythons are incredible snakes that can grow to huge lengths, weigh up to 10kgs, and make for excellent pets. If you come across what you think may be a carpet python, here are some ways to identify the species:

  • olive-green colours with dark brown patches bordered in black
  • young carpet pythons may be more brown in colour
  • large, angular head with prominent eyes and nostrils
  • large in size 
  • pale underbelly 

The coastal carpet python is not venomous – it does not have fangs, either! This doesn’t mean its defenseless, however. Apart from its incredible size and strength, carpet pythons also contain around 100 small, sharp teeth that can cause needle-like lacerations when biting. 

Yes, like all pythons, coastal carpet pythons have teeth. Their teeth do not contain any venom and are only used for grasping and holding onto their prey. Carpet pythons have a row of sharp, recurved teeth that help them to hold onto their prey as they constrict it.

They do not have fangs like your typical venomous snakes, such as the infamous red-bellied black snake or the keelback snake

Coastal carpet pythons can be dangerous to humans, especially if you are not trained to handle this snake or are unfamiliar with what to do in an encounter with one. 

While they lack venom, they can be dangerous in other ways: 100 small, sharp teeth and constricting prey makes them formidable and dangerous to handle. 

Carpet pythons are carnivores, preying on wildlife such as wallabies, possums, and even birds. They have been known to prey on cats and dogs, too, so if one ventures into your garden, keep any pets and even small children well away from the snake. 

Call Snake Rescue Sunny Coast to safely capture and remove any unwelcome snakes from your home or garden.

Coastal carpet pythons make for great pets, though you do require the correct licence to own one. 

It is not recommended and illegal to try to tame, capture, or home a wild carpet python, even if you find one as a juvenile. Instead, find a reputable local breeder, read up on the species’ care requirements, and make an informed decision when selecting your pet.

Coastal carpet pythons are arboreal, meaning they live in trees. Any snake that predominantly resides in a tree is considered an arboreal species, such as the green tree snake and the brown tree snake.

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