Carpet Python (Morelia spilota) Care Sheet
Carpet pythons are found throughout Australia and parts of New Guinea. There are many different subspecies of carpet pythons. The most common are Jungle Carpet Pythons, Coastal Carpet Pythons, and Irian Jaya Carpet Pythons. Jungle carpet pythons are among the most beautiful snakes and inhabit northern Queensland. Coastal carpet pythons inhabit much of eastern Australia and adults can reach over ten feet long. Irian Jaya carpet pythons are usually reddish-brown as hatchlings and adults seldom grow over six feet. These snakes are excellent climbers and can usually be found in the trees. Jungle carpet and coastal carpet pythons typically prefer denser forests and are found near waterways. The Irian Jaya carpet python is restricted to a more open savannah and is usually not found in dense forests. Carpet pythons can lay 10-25 eggs and they will hatch within 65 days when incubated at 84-88 degrees.
Carpet pythons should be maintained at 85-90 degrees during the day. A hot spot under the heat light should reach 95 degrees. Nighttime temperatures need to range between 72-80 degrees. If you keep your snake too cool it can regurgitate, so make sure the temperatures are maintained. Daily misting should be used to maintain humidity between 65-80 %. Snakes shed in one complete piece, if yours is shedding in pieces the humidity is too low. Another option to increase humidity is to provide a box with a small entrance, for the snake to enter, filled with damp potting soil and moss.
Baby carpet pythons can be kept in 29 gallon or larger terrariums. Adults can be housed comfortably in a 6’x2’x4’. Ideally the larger the snake the more room you want to provide. Never place a cage near a window where sunlight can directly shine on your cage. Cages placed in direct sunlight can easily overheat and ultimately lead to the death of your snake.
Our recommendation for bedding is bark, coconut bark, or Eco Earth. This bedding holds moisture very well and duplicates their natural environment.
Carpet pythons feed on pinkie, fuzzy or small adult mice as babies and juveniles. As your snake grows it will soon move up to rats. We recommend that you feed baby and juvenile carpet pythons 1-2 times per week. Adult carpet pythons can be fed once every 7-10 days to maintain proper body weight. Like most snakes, carpet pythons typically will not eat when they are preparing to shed. After your snake has shed you can return to your normal feeding regiment. If your snake doesn’t eat make sure you remove the rodent from the cage. Rodents, when hungry, can bite snakes and possibly injure or kill your snake.