There was great excitement (and a bit of fear!) last week when a South African rock python was spotted sunning itself on a golf cart path near Laburnum Way. This glorious beauty surely got residents and wildlife enthusiasts buzzing!

While the snake may be large – it’s the fourth largest in the world – please don’t let that scare you. This is a non-venomous, relatively slow-moving snake that is by no means aggressive. If disturbed, they usually prefer to flee but, like all wildlife, it will defend itself if cornered or provoked and can inflict a painful wound with its recurved teeth.

Some snake species have become threatened due to land clearing for agriculture, urban development and through the introduction of animals such as domestic pets. Listed as vulnerable in the South African Red Data Book, this python is protected, therefore it may not be captured or killed. At Simbithi we aim to maintaining a high level of biodiversity which is vital to all life on Earth, including humans, and snakes are an important part of that biodiversity.

Weight: Male: 20-40 kg – Female: 30-60 kg

Length: Male: Up to 3.5m – Female:  Up to 5m

General Habitat: Inhabiting a wide variety of habitats including moist savannah, rocky outcrops, Forested areas, close to a water body.

Diet: Many different prey items depending on the age and size of the snake. Scrub hares, rodents, bats, monkeys, birds, antelope

If you spot the snake, please let it be. It will be more active now due to the warmer weather.

If you have any questions, contact ea@simbithi.com.

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