About Green Tree Pythons
Scientific name: Morelia viridis
Size: 4 – 6ft
Lifespan: Approx 20 years
Wild Population: 5,000+
Primary Colour: Green
Habitat: Indonesia, Australia, Papua New Guinea
Difficulty of Keeping: Very Challenging, Ideal For Experience Keepers
Optimum environment Temperature: 88°F hotspot with ambient temp of 80°F
What do they eat? Mice, Small Rats, birds & other rodents.
Purpose: Green tree pythons spend 90% of their life in trees and as they age go further up, their colour mimics the leaf colour change.
Eggs or Live birth: Egg baring snake.
Venomous: None venomous/ None poisonous
Are they kept in captivity? Most green tree pythons are kept as display snakes, rarely are they tolerant of handling.
Ease of keeping as a pet: Difficulty due to requirements & tend to not tolerate handling well.
Cost: Ranges between £50 – £3,000+ dependant on morph (colour)
So, you’re thinking about getting a green tree python, huh? These snakes are seriously stunning, and the fact that we can keep them as pets is pretty amazing.
They’re not too big or heavy-bodied, which makes them a great pick for reptile enthusiasts. But before you rush out to set up their new home, there are a few things you should know.
Handling can be a bit tricky, especially if you’re not used to dealing with feisty snakes. Most green tree pythons aren’t big fans of being handled, especially when they’re young. Some keepers actually choose to admire them from a distance, only handling them when absolutely necessary.
And let’s talk about humidity. These pythons need a specific level to stay healthy and happy in captivity. So, you’ll need to create an environment that keeps them comfortable.
Remember, they’re not the easiest to handle, especially for beginners. If you’re new to snake-keeping, it might be a good idea to start with a more laid-back species.
Some keepers prefer to just enjoy them as display snakes. This means providing excellent care, but keeping handling to a minimum.
Feeding is relatively straightforward – they chow down on small rodents. But you’ll want to make sure they’re getting the right-sized meals on a regular basis.
Also, keep in mind that these snakes live a long time. You’ll be committed to their care for potentially over two decades.
Oh, and one more thing – setting up their habitat can get a bit pricey. You’ll need a well-equipped enclosure, heating gear, and quality food.
Before bringing one home, do your homework. Research their needs, habits, and quirks. Connect with experienced keepers or join online communities for some insider tips.
So, are you up for the challenge of having a green tree python as a pet? They’re incredible creatures, but they do require a bit of extra TLC!
What you will need to set up a green tree python
So, if you’re gearing up to welcome a green tree python into your home, let’s talk about the digs! Exo-Terra has some awesome starter kits that come with about 90% of what you’ll need to kickstart this new adventure. Just make sure to snag the one designed for green tree pythons.
Now, about the cage material. Glass enclosures are a tad pricier, but they have their perks. You’ll need to give it a good spray daily, but it beats dealing with a wooden vivarium that might start rotting over time. Plus, glass terrariums are a breeze to clean, and you can spot any messes or potential mite issues pronto.
When it comes to size, don’t stress. Here’s a simple rule of thumb: Add the length and depth of the vivarium, and that’s the ideal length for your snake’s new pad. Going a bit bigger is always a smart move. It gives your snake more room to grow and saves you from having to upgrade every 3 to 6 months when they’re young.
Oh, and bonus – a lot of glass cages already come with a nifty lock on the front. One less thing to worry about, right?
Last but not least, let’s talk perches. Your snake needs a comfy spot to chill. Make sure it’s horizontal and sturdy enough for them to plop down with more than half their body weight. These pythons are all about the tree life, spending about 90% of their time in the branches.
So, get that setup ready, and your new python pal will be living the high life in no time! 🌿🐍
Thermostat/ Heat Bulb/ Heat Guard
Now, let’s talk gear to keep your green tree python safe and comfy. First up, you’ll need a top-notch thermostat. This little gadget is a lifesaver, preventing your snake from getting too cozy with the heat source and risking a burn. These pythons love to cozy up close to their bulb.
For this job, a Dimming thermostat is a fantastic choice. We’re partial to the Evo model because it lets you set both daytime and nighttime temperatures, a must for keeping your green tree python happy.
To add an extra layer of protection, throw in a bulb guard. This nifty contraption makes sure your snake can’t get too close to the heat source. Fun fact: Burns from unguarded heat sources are one of the top reasons snakes end up at the vet, so don’t skimp on this!
And last but not least, you’ve got to choose the right bulb for your setup. An infra-red bulb works great, and it has the bonus of giving your snake a cool red backlight in the evening. It’s a win-win!
So, with these essentials, your green tree python’s setup will be all set, and you can enjoy watching them in all their glory, especially when the lights dim.
Next up, we’ve got some essential tools to make sure your green tree python’s home is just right…
Now that you’ve got all your gear ready for the enclosure, it’s time to talk humidity.
Here’s the scoop: You want to keep the vivarium’s humidity level between 40% and 70%. That’s the sweet spot for your python’s comfort.
To hit this target, I’ve found that giving the cage a gentle spritz in the morning and another check in the evening does the trick. Spray it about 4 to 8 times, but don’t go overboard – we don’t want mold making itself at home.
If you happen to see the humidity shoot up to 90% or more after spraying, don’t fret. It’ll gradually ease down as the day goes on. Your python will be living its best, comfortably humidified life in no time. 🌿💧
Green Tree Python temperatures
Ambient Temp: 75 – 78 degrees Fahrenheit
Basking spot: up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit
Ambient Temp: 70 – 75 degrees Fahrenheit (not going below 70)
Basking spot: up to 82 degrees Fahrenheit
Set these up on your thermostat and place the temperature probe on the hot side of the enclosure and you will be good to go.
Substrate & Bedding
Now, what to put on the floor of your python’s enclosure. It’s all about creating a comfy and humidity-friendly environment.
Cypress Mulch: This stuff is a winner. It’s not just great for your snake to slither over; it also holds onto moisture, which is perfect for keeping that humidity level just right. Plus, it’s a breeze to spot clean, making cage maintenance a piece of cake. It’s easy on the wallet, too, and you can snag it at your local reptile shop or order it online.
Coconut Husk: If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, coconut husk is a worthy alternative to cypress mulch. It has the same humidity-loving qualities, but it might cost you a tad more. The trade-off? Not much, but it can still do the job well.
So, whether you go with cypress mulch or coconut husk, your snake will appreciate the comfy flooring, and you’ll appreciate how it helps maintain humidity in the enclosure.
Green Tree Python Food
Mice are perfect and suitable for hatchlings/ sub-adult snakes, as they grow you may find that small and possibly medium rats could be better suited.
So how do you know what to feed right now?
We have another formula just for you, the widest girth of the snake’s body = the size of the prey item being fed.
It is really that simple, don’t worry if the size of the rodent is a little big or small as in the wild, green tree pythons don’t have time to assess what they are going to eat.
Frozen food is better feed to your pet snakes, this protects the welfare of the prey item and damage to the snake.
Yes, there are a lot of cases where a snake has not eaten the mouse/rat and the rodent has attacked the snake.
Do Green tree Pythons Have Teeth?
Yes, and plenty of them. Their teeth recline towards the back of the mouth to stop prey from escaping their grasp.
It will not tickle, nor will it be as bad as you are currently thinking either.
Most snake bites are as quick as an eye can blink, often letting go before you can react, if this is the case the puncture marks are barely visible due to how thin the teeth are.
Handling A Green Tree Python
So, you’ve heard that handling a green tree python can be a bit of a challenge. We get it, but don’t let that discourage you. We’ve put together a guide to help you build the best relationship with your pet python.
First things first, be prepared for the occasional nip. If you’re not, this might not be for you. Handling these snakes is a unique experience.
To increase your chances of success and make the process smoother, it’s best to start with a hatchling or sub-adult snake.
Understanding the snake’s perspective is key here. They may feel cornered with no escape, which means they’ll either react positively or negatively.
The good news is, they’ll likely be perched when you start. So, here’s how you begin:
Open the cage and watch the snake’s reaction as the cooler air enters. It’s all about maintaining a consistent, calm approach.
Slowly and steadily, reach in and lift the perch out of the cage. Pay close attention to the snake’s reaction, which might not be what you expect.
If you’re not feeling too confident about reaching into the cage, consider wearing a glove. It can give you that extra bit of assurance to start.
Keep the branch outside the cage. This way, your snake can climb onto your arm if it chooses to, but be mindful of not letting it near your neck or face.
Repeat this process 2-3 times a week over a few weeks. Ideally, stick to 2 times a week, allowing the snake some time to de-stress between handling sessions.
In the end, patience and consistency are your best friends here. Your confidence and your green tree python’s trust will grow over time. You might encounter a few setbacks, but stay the course, and you’ll both get the hang of it. 🐍🤝
Green Tree Python Morphs
Biak: Green body with asymmetrical patches of yellow. The shade of green can largely vary.
Aru: Bright green body colour with blue blotches. white scales which may appear in clusters. Some have a blue line surrounding the belly.
Jayapura: Blue-green body colour with blue striping along the back. yellow or white scales. Black-tipped tail.
Sorong: Medium shade green body. Blue dorsal line and triangles either side of the line. Black-tipped tail.
Manokwari: Light green primarily. Bright blue dorsal markings which vary from snake to snake. few single white scales. blue & Black tail.