The Green Tree Python, Morelia viridis, also known as the Emerald Green Python, is a species of non-venomous snake in the family Pythonidae. It is native to New Guinea, parts of Indonesia, and the Cape York Peninsula in Australia.
It is a bright green snake that can reach a total length of 2 m (6.6 ft) and can weigh as much as 1.6 kg (3.5 lb), with females slightly larger and heavier than males. Living mostly in trees, the green tree python mainly hunts and eats small reptiles and mammals.
The Green Tree Python is often bred and as a pet, despite its specific care requirements and generally irritable temperament. However, with proper care, it generally thrives in captivity.
This has, unfortunately but not unexpectedly, led to large numbers being illegally caught in the wild to the detriment of native populations. Transport is hazardous to the snakes’ health and up to half are thought to perish in the smuggling process.
In 1999, it was fully protected under national legislation in Indonesia. However, that has not stopped the thriving illegal trade in these beautiful reptiles.
Despite all this, it is still listed as ‘Least Concern’ by the IUCN.
This particular specimen is a resident at the Bioparc in Fuengirola, Spain.