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GBWhite

Well-Known Member
APS Veteran
Hi,

There are those species as mentioned - Mulgas and Cobras etc; that are specialist snake feeders but I think you'll find that as a rule most species of snakes (including pythons) are opportunistic feeders and wouldn't hesitate to eat anything they consider viable and of a suitable size.

I remember a few years back when a group from SA University in conjunction with Steve Irwins, Australia Zoo released some Womas in an area in an attempt to repopulate and they were all eaten by Mulgas within a couple of weeks.

It doesn't surprise me one bit that monitors used in the Cane Toad study in WA became snake snacks. I've attached a couple of pics that have been around for a while of a Blackheaded knocking down a good sized Panoptes.


http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic14989.jpg.html?sort=3&o=8

http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic09503.jpg.html?sort=3&o=9

http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic28009.jpg.html?sort=3&o=12

George.

ps; The photo in the earlier post depicts a Water Python overpowering a juvenile Scrubby.
 
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Dr-Zoidberg

Active Member
Hi,

There are those species as mentioned - Mulgas and Cobras etc; that are specialist snake feeders but I think you'll find that as a rule most species of snakes (including pythons) are opportunistic feeders and wouldn't hesitate to eat anything they consider viable and of a suitable size.

I remember a few years back when a group from SA University in conjunction with Steve Irwins, Australia Zoo released some Womas in an area in an attempt to repopulate and they were all eaten by Mulgas within a couple of weeks.

It doesn't surprise me one bit that monitors used in the Cane Toad study in WA became snake snacks. I've attached a couple of pics that have been around for a while of a Blackheaded knocking down a good sized Panoptes.


http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic14989.jpg.html?sort=3&o=8

http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic09503.jpg.html?sort=3&o=9

http://s251.photobucket.com/user/mandrakis/media/pic28009.jpg.html?sort=3&o=12

George.

ps; The photo in the earlier post depicts a Water Python overpowering a juvenile Scrubby.

I agree 100% that snakes are opportunistic predators, my brother conducted a study with some colleagues on flat back turtles on peak island, they found a spotted python with what they believed to be a hatchling flat back turtle inside it's stomach. Also during a wind storm a paper plate holding there chicken thigh dinners fell on the ground and a piece was taken and eaten by another spotted python. I want to conduct my own study on whether or not wild snakes will scavenge when the opportunity arrives.
 

Primo

Active Member
I agree 100% that snakes are opportunistic predators, my brother conducted a study with some colleagues on flat back turtles on peak island, they found a spotted python with what they believed to be a hatchling flat back turtle inside it's stomach. Also during a wind storm a paper plate holding there chicken thigh dinners fell on the ground and a piece was taken and eaten by another spotted python. I want to conduct my own study on whether or not wild snakes will scavenge when the opportunity arrives.

I know some people here have fed their boa constrictors chicken parts, and I recall there have been reports of carrion being eaten though not regularly.
 

GBWhite

Well-Known Member
APS Veteran
I know of a few people over here that feed their pythons chicken parts when rodents are a bit hard to come by. I've got a mate with some absolutely huge NT Mulgas that he feeds chicken parts and sausages when he can't get rats.

Also heard about Keelbacks and Bed Belly Black Snakes scrapping dead Cane Toads off the road and eating them. The Keelbacks were actually doing this while live toads and native frogs were hopping about.
 

Dr-Zoidberg

Active Member
It's stories such as those that sparked my interest, there is virtually nothing written about the subject in any texts I've read .
 

GBWhite

Well-Known Member
APS Veteran
There is either a paper or an article about the Keelbacks, not sure which but remember reading it a couple of years back. Think I read something about RRB's eating both live and dead toads but can't remember where or when I read it.
 

Dr-Zoidberg

Active Member
There is either a paper or an article about the Keelbacks, not sure which but remember reading it a couple of years back. Think I read something about RRB's eating both live and dead toads but can't remember where or when I read it.

There's a trial being conducted in Guam, where they're air dropping baited mice over the jungles in an attempt to slow down the damage brown tree snakes are causing to the native wildlife. The baited mice are attached to a makeshift "parachute" that's designed to become entangled high in the canopy to ensure they're only consumed by the brown tree snake and not the many monitor lizards that reside there. I'm sure many monitors (mainly juveniles) will become collateral damage.

there's also a paper on cotton mouths taking carrion (even skellital remains of fish) in Florida I think it was.
 

Joshm

New Member
Very interesting info guys!

Primo, I do believe the eastern indigo would be the largest down there when it comes to snake eaters.
 

GBWhite

Well-Known Member
APS Veteran
Sorry if we're going a bit off topic Primo but seeing as how there's been the post about Brown Trees on Guam, rather than start a new thread I thought I'd whack this up here for anyone that may be interested. I found it on the net when I was reading about the control method using laced mice.

http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/animals/bts.shtml

It'll be interesting to see what effect the control method using the mice laced with Tylenol will have. They've been a really bad problem on Guam for years. I remember reading about their effect on the native birds back in the mid 1990's. Seems they don't know if they got there on defence force ships or cargo ships or if they're originally from Australia, New Guinea or Indonesia.

About 10 years or so ago I was talking to a guy who had a job patrolling the fence line at the airport to try and stop them from getting on flights to Hawaii. He was saying they are worried about them reaching there and having the same thing happen with their birds and other wildlife.
 

Primo

Active Member
Very interesting info guys!

Primo, I do believe the eastern indigo would be the largest down there when it comes to snake eaters.

Mussurana Clelia Clelia is a South American snake eater that is quite large it's rear fanged, has mild venom that is not lethal to humans usually, but it is to other snakes, and it's also a constrictor so it packs a double punch.

The Indigo, has a fixed, powerful jaw and it bites and thrashes is prey.

The Eastern King is also very large so we have a few big ones in the Americas.

The Olive seems to be one of the largest anywhere sans the king cobra.


Good thread going here with a lot of various info packed in to this.
 

Dr-Zoidberg

Active Member
http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/animals/bts.shtml

It'll be interesting to see what effect the control method using the mice laced with Tylenol will have. They've been a really bad problem on Guam for years. I remember reading about their effect on the native birds back in the mid 1990's. Seems they don't know if they got there on defence force ships or cargo ships or if they're originally from Australia, New Guinea or Indonesia.

About 10 years or so ago I was talking to a guy who had a job patrolling the fence line at the airport to try and stop them from getting on flights to Hawaii. He was saying they are worried about them reaching there and having the same thing happen with their birds and other wildlife.

Thanks for posting that link, I wasn't aware that the brown trees had been in Guam for over fifty years. It's no wonder that so many endemic species have dissapered from the island. According to Wikipedia, there are 40% more spiders on Guam, than neighbouring islands due to the loss or reduction of the birds that ate them.
 
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