As disussed in the woma photo gallery, womas occur across most of arid central Australia and can vary a great deal in colour, pattern and size across their range. For example, the womas in the south-eastern extreme of their distribution retain their eye-patches into adulthood and were previously even given a different species name. The very rare south-western womas are reported to have larger and fewer scales on the body, dark heads and wide, uniform banding.
In Australia, most captive womas have come from the central and southern regions of the Northern Territory and the adjacent areas of Western Australia. The animals pictured here originated from the western end of the MacDonnell ranges around Uluru. Although there is marked variation between populations across their range from the northern Tanami desert to the more central populations, in our experience these womas tend to be slightly larger than the northern Tanami womas and have more evenly spaced and darker banding that remains distinct even in quite old animals. Their bellies can vary from a yellowish tone to a reddish orange and usually have a more course speckled appearance than the Tanami womas.
We also have found some differences in behaviour between the captive populations of Tanami and Uluru womas. The Tanami's have a greater tendency to caudal luring (rapidly wagging their tails to attract food), mate later in the season and lay a lot earlier than the Uluru's. As you move further south, it makes sense that a snake that incubates its eggs would wait a little longer for the weather to warm.
Tanami and Uluru womas are equally hardy in captivity. They are both capable diggers, like black-headed pythons, and so need to be kept in a cage where objects cannot easily be dislodged and hurt them. They are quite active pythons, often basking happily in the open during the day and then pacing and exploring their cages at night. As a captive python species, they are hard to beat for their good looks, manageable size and excellent temperament.
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