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Scrub python

scrub python (Simalia kinghorni)
Wooroonooran National Park, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
Simalia kinghorni - (Stull, 1933)
Pronunciation  SIM-ah-LEE-ah   KING-horn-ee
Etymology  Simalia: unknown.
kinghorni: "in honor of Mr. J. Roy Kinghorn, in recognition of his notable work on the Australian snakes."1
Other names  Amethystine python
Amethyst python
Australian scrub python
Liasis amethistina kinghorni
Morelia amethistina
Morelia kinghorni
Total length
Species avg: 350 cm
Species max: 500 cm
Clutch size
Average: 11
Range: 7 - 19
Length and clutch size information comes from a variety of sources, but primarily from Shine (1991) and Cogger (2000).
Description Distribution Natural history Conservation Further information More photos


Very large and slender.
Pale yellow/brown with many darker blotches, some coalescing into a mesh-like pattern.
Iridescent sheen.

Similar species

Taxonomic notes

This species was described by Stull in 1933, but was originally placed in a different genus.1
Cogger (2014) notes that it is unclear whether the name Similia clarki or S. kinghorni should apply to Australian members of the S. amethistina complex, and thus recognises only the name S. amethistina until this matter is resolved. Considering that genetic evidence suggests Australian and Torres Strait scrub pythons are distinct from S. amethistina sensu stricto, and that the Australian taxon is likely to be elevated again using one name or another, we prefer to recognise it as a distinct species, S. kinghorni, although recognise that the specific name might change pending further research.

Scale count information

Dorsal scales at midbody   35 to 50
Ventrals   270 to 340 with a single anal scale
Subcaudals   80 to 120 and are divided
Other scale information   Head scales large and symmetrical.
Danger rating   Non-venomous. Not considered dangerous, but can still bite. A bite from a really big snake would really hurt!
Note: even a bite from a 'virtually harmless' or non-venomous reptile can result in serious complications. Play it safe and don't get bitten by anything.
Notes and disclaimer
This information may not be complete. While all care is taken to ensure the accuracy of the information in this page, primary sources should always be consulted for definitive information. Animals have an endearing habit of disobeying the rules, so the information on this page should be interpreted with a degree of flexibility.
The author and site operator accepts no responsibility for any losses or damages incurred through using this web site or the information contained herein. Don't get bitten by anything!
This page may be cited as:
  Simalia kinghorni at the Australian Reptile Online Database. Last updated 2019-05-09 14:16:30.
  Retrieved from on the 4th of June, 2020.
Before citing information contained in AROD, please read our Citing AROD page.

Copyright notice
This page, its content and layout are copyright © 2007-2020 Stewart Macdonald / Ug Media, unless otherwise stated.
All photographs in The Australian Reptile Online Database are © the photographer and may not be reproduced in any form without the express written consent of the photographer.
No part of The Australian Reptile Online Database may be reproduced without written permission from Stewart Macdonald.
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