Antaresia maculosa 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Pythonidae

Scientific Name: Antaresia maculosa (Peters, 1873)
Common Name(s):
English Spotted Python, Eastern Childrens Python, Eastern Small-blotched Python, Mottled Python
Liasis maculosus Peters, 1873

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2017-06-12
Assessor(s): Tallowin, O., O'Shea, M., Parker, F., Sanderson, C. & Wilson, S.
Reviewer(s): Auliya, M.
Contributor(s): Woods, C.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Cox, N.A.

This species is listed as Least Concern. It has a large distribution in northeastern Australia, and has also been recorded from southern New Guinea, near Sota in Papua Province (Indonesia) and Weam in Papua New Guinea. It inhabits a wide range of habitats and thrives in modified areas in Australia. It is unlikely to be affected by any major threats and is present in a large number of protected areas in Australia. The subpopulation in Papua New Guinea may be threatened by the international pet trade but further research on this is required. If the New Guinea subpopulation is found to represent a distinct taxon this population may qualify for listing at a higher threat category, primarily because of the threat of the impact of international trade.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

This species is widespread in Australia occurring from Tamworth in New South Wales north to northern Cape York Peninsula in Queensland (Wilson and Swan 2003). It is known from the Torres Strait islands of Waiben, Kirriri, Badu, Mabuyag and Mua (Lavery et al. 2012). O’Shea et al. (2004) reported the first occurrence outside Australia, at Weam in Western Province, Papua New Guinea. It is likely that this species has a much larger distribution in Papua New Guinea due to the large area of suitable tropical woodland habitat, and there is a single record from Soto, across the border in Indonesian Papua (Natusch and Lyons 2011). It has been found under 50 m asl  in New Guinea.

Countries occurrence:
Australia (New South Wales, Queensland); Indonesia (Papua); Papua New Guinea (Papua New Guinea (main island group))
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


This can be a very common species in Australia, with a typically stable population.

Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

In Australia this species inhabits a wide range of habitats, including wet coastal rainforests, cane fields, seasonally dry woodlands in the north, dry savanna and rocky outcrops. It is also found in modified areas such as disturbed agricultural land. It is a nocturnal terrestrial and arboreal species which feeds primarily upon small mammals, birds, bats and reptiles (including small agamids, geckos, skinks and small monitor species) (Barker and Barker 1994, Cogger 2000, Wilson and Swan 2003). It is an oviparous species and it is presumed that the breeding occurs during cooler months (May through August). This species may lay clutches of between 4-18 eggs (O'Shea 2007). In New Guinea it has been recorded from eucalypt savanna, with numerous termite mounds.


Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

This species is regularly found in the pet trade in Australia, both wild and captive-bred specimens. Natusch and Lyons (2011) expressed concern that although this species has only recently been recorded in Papua New Guinea (O’Shea 2004) it has apparently been traded for at least the preceding five years in Merauke region, Indonesia Natusch and Lyons (2012) noted that in Merauke in Indonesian New Guinea four individuals were recorded at wildlife traders between September 2010 - April 2011. 

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

Overall, it is unlikely that any major threats are impacting this species. This species is present in the international pet trade in Indonesia, from which there is a single confirmed locality. As this species is currently only known from two localities in southern New Guinea exploitation by the pet trade may be threatening this subpopulation. If the subpopulation in New Guinea proves to be taxonomically distinct from Australian animals their desirability will increase, placing further pressure on this presumably range-restricted subpopulation.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: In Australia, this species is present in many protected areas, and no direct conservation measures are needed. This species has protection status in Australia, Papua New Guinea but not in Indonesian New Guinea (Natusch and Lyons 2012). This species may occur within one protected area within Papua New Guinea, the Tonda Wildlife Management Area, and a large number of reserves in Australia. Further research into this species' distribution in New Guinea and a program to monitor the harvest and trade levels and collection source of individuals is recommended. This species is listed under Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

Citation: Tallowin, O., O'Shea, M., Parker, F., Sanderson, C. & Wilson, S. 2017. Antaresia maculosa. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T13300653A13300663. . Downloaded on 15 October 2018.
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