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Black-headed/woma python
Aspidites - Peters, 1876

Pronunciation: ASS-pid-EE-tayz
Etymology: 'shield-bearer', referring to the large scales on the head.

Taxonomic notes:

Notes: Both species in this genus lack labial heat pits. Some herpetologists believe this may be an evolutionary result of these snakes' propensity for eating a high proportion of ectothermic prey.
Statistics: Reproductive modes:
Oviparous - 2 out of 2 Australian species

Size range:
Smallest Australian species: woma (Aspidites ramsayi) at 150 cm
 Longest Australian species: woma (Aspidites ramsayi) at up to 270 cm
Number of Australian species: 2

black-headed python (Aspidites melanocephalus)
Alpha, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
black-headed python (Aspidites melanocephalus) distribution range map Aspidites melanocephalus
Black-headed python
Year described
(Krefft 1864)
Head, neck and throat are jet black, with the colouration ending abruptly. Light background over body with darker stripes above. Belly remains light cream, sometimes with darker blotches.

woma (Aspidites ramsayi)
Port Hedland, Western Australia
Photo © Jordan Vos
woma (Aspidites ramsayi) distribution range map Aspidites ramsayi
Year described
(Macleay 1882)
Pale yellow- or reddish-brown background, with numerous darker bands running across body. Juveniles have a dark patch above their eye. This eye patch generally fades as the animal matures, but often remains on animals from south-east Queensland. This animal tends to be very triangular in cross-section.

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