Information about: Python

Index | Python

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Python. A genus and family of serpents allied to the family of boas. They are not venomous, but kill their prey by compression. The pythons belong exclusively to the old world, and are of enormous size, sometimes attaining a length of over 20 feet. They are found in India and in the islands of the Eastern Archipelago, in Africa and in Australia. A rudimentary pelvis and traces of hinder limbs exist in the pythons, these structures terminating externally in a kind of hooked claw. The head exceeds the neck in thickness, and the mouth is extremely large. Aided by their prehensile tails and rudimentary hinder limbs, the pythons suspend themselves from the branches of trees and lie in wait near water for animals which come to drink. The genus python contains various species, the best known of which is the reticulated python of the Malay peninsula, Sumatra, and Borneo, common in menageries.