Pythons: Why are they ssssssurfacing in Ssssssingapore?


The newspapers seem to suggest that it is merely the monsoon that brings our slithery friends. But this isn’t the first time we’ve had monsoons and this surely isn’t the first day of social media, why are there these python sightings?

The numbers have been increasing too. Last year the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority was said to have received 780 cases of “feedback” and 610 cases in 2014.

Not too long ago, I’ve spotted one myself in Jurong. The little boy in me wanted to pull it by the tail and get a nice selfie done – but the sensible thirty-something withheld my actions. With good cause, I may have become snake food.


I think there are a few other reasons for the increase in the rate of snake spotting:

a.) There is more food. Snakes snack on rats. And there are more rats so hence they’re coming out to help themselves to the buffet.

b.) There’s nothing left to eat in the wilderness…or whatever’s left of it. If the snake’s prey are starving out, then that’s pretty good reason for the predator to move on also shouldn’t they?

c.) They have fewer prey. Large birds, wild boars and foreign workers are some of the snake’s natural enemies. With wildlife decreasing and foreign worker quotas tightening, the snakes are now making parties without fear. (For the uptight amongst you, gimmie a break, it’s just a joke)
Meanwhile, we have fun and try to spot where the next fella is going to appear. The most dramatic picture has to be the one taken last Sunday (Nov 27). A 3 meter long python was spotted climbing the gate of a HDB door.

Last Monday, Ms Nazirah Isabella saw a cat being devoured by a python in a canal in the Jalan Besar area.

Between January and October alone this year, the AVA said it has logged 700 cases of public feedback on snakes.

Acres deputy chief executive Kalai Balakrishnan urged the public not to be afraid of these creatures. “Singapore is an urban setting (where most of our rivers have been canalised), so canals are a natural habitat for many wild animals including pythons (which) use it as a path to travel through”, he said.

If sighted, his advice is to give them a two-to-three metre berth, not to provoke the animals and to give ACRES a call so they’ll come and take care of it.

Either that, or give Gucci a buzz and hope that they’ll make you a nice handbag in return.



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