2,274Grants to

1,458(Sub)Species

Reticulated Python (Broghamerus reticulatus)

Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 13057088

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 13057088) - Reticulated Python - Awarded $3,500 on November 25, 2013

The field study conducted in three islands of South Sulawesi Province, they were Kalaotoa Island, Madu Island, and Kayuadi Island. Unfortunately we have to change one of the Islands (Kayuadi Island à Karompa Island) due to effectiveness and to know better reticulated python characters of the farthest clustering island from Sulawesi mainland. The three islands located at Sea of Flores, almost exactly at the middle of Sulawesi mainland and East Nusa Tenggara Island.

 

Python reticulatus has been traded and heavily exploited for decades. Both sellers and exporters tend to sell immediate catch from the wild to gain faster and more profit. The catch generally from Java, Sumatra, Borneo, and Sulawesi mainland. As time goes by, people who have experienced the difficulty of keeping large snake try to look for alternative. They began to realize the smaller size Python reticulatus from South Sulawesi Islands (Jampea, Kayuadi, Selayar at that time and have been studied by Auliya). And more islands were explored and exploited to fulfill market demand up to date. Kalaotoa and Madu population has been exposed to pet trading this decade, yet remain unstudied until Evi Arida (Indonesian institute of Science) and our team at separate time begin to study Kalaotoa  population, and our team added more sample of the population from Madu and Karompa Islands. At the beginning of our field study, we were not aware of Karompa population existence. (Thanks to local people of Madu Island who gave us this precious information).

 

We stayed at snake’s collector house in order to get a better access for collecting data. According to their information, retics of Madu and Kalaotoa Island have been collected for more than decade. Each year they can collect for hundreds of reticulated python from the wild for each island and sell it to collector in Selayar Island. The collecting of snakes still continues especially in Madu Island in high amount each year, even though Madu Island has smaller population of Python reticulatus than Kalaotoa Island (Madu Island dimentional size less than 2kmx10km). as for Karompa Island, their very first collection and trade just began just before our team arrival. And right now we can easily find Python reticulatus from Karompa Island in online market, and one of our colleague who has bought wild catch retics of Karompa Island informed us that the snake has anerythristic mutation.

 

we can conclude generally, these three population has closer relationship to Java (P. reticulatus reticulatus) and Jampea population (P. reticulatus jampeanus) rather than to Selayar population (P. reticulatus saputrai). in our opinion, they seems to build dispersal route from East Nusa Tenggara to Jampea Island, but cant cross further to Selayar Island. Further study should be conducted in many more population to complete the genetic map of this species. 

 

some more effort need to be done to conserve and limit the trading quote of these three population retics (the quote need to be excluded from other mainland population), educate local people is one first step, but the real action and new regulation by local goverment is highly recomended to maintain the sustainability of these populations (highlight)

 

as for more informative result of our project, please refer to the link provided

Project document