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Royal python

Python regius


Experts believe the name royal python was inspired by Cleopatra, who reportedly wore these beautiful snakes as bracelets on her wrists. Royal pythons are found in Africa, particularly in Ghana and Togo. They are also known as ball pythons because, when they are frightened, they roll into a tight ball. Royal pythons have bold patterns on their brown skin and, although their colour varies, it usually includes shades of yellow. The royal python is a very small species of python, which generally does not grow to more than 90 to 120 centimetres.

Pythons are not poisonous. Instead, they kill their prey by encircling it and tightening their coils to cause suffocation. Their brown and black markings help them camouflage on the forest floor as they wait to ambush their prey.

Our royal python is part of our educational collection and is not available for public viewing.

  Fun fact One of the smaller python species

Animal class

Reptile

Conservation status

Royal pythons are not endangered at present but they are threatened by the pet trade and hunted for their skin and meat.

Habitat

Rainforest – found in wooded areas, grasslands and savannahs of Africa.

Population

Their numbers in the wild are unknown but are thought to be stable.

Diet

Carnivore – eats a range of prey including lizards, birds, rodents and other small mammals.