African rock pythons (Sebae natalensis) are non-venomous, killing by constricting their prey, tightening their grip every time the victim breathes out. They may reach up to six meters in length and their prey ranges from anything from bats to medium sized animals, including large impala, warthogs and even crocodiles, swallowing them whole and then allowing their digestive acids and enzymes to break down any hard material. They are a very primitive snake, with two functioning lungs and small thorn like projections on their lower body – these tiny vestiges are presumed to act as hind limbs and assist in movement. Over the years on the Grumeti Concession we have seen many of these beautiful creatures, adept on the ground, in trees and on water.
Image by George Tolchard