Difference Between Anaconda and Python

Anaconda vs Python

It is a commonly known fact that anaconda and python are the largest snakes in the world, but only few experienced people would know the actual scientifically accepted differences between them. Therefore, understanding the existing variations between anaconda and python would be interesting for anyone, and this article intends to do so while presenting the reader important facts about these enormous creatures.


Although the origin of the term anaconda refers to an existed great snake from Sri Lanka, they are native animals of South America and found nowhere else today. According to the descriptions based on Sinhalese literature, the name anaconda generally means that it kills the prey by constriction, but some scientists also coin the Tamil word anaikorala for its origin. Anaconda, Common anaconda, and Green anaconda are the commonly referred names for this enormous snake. They belong to the Family: Boidae and there are a couple of other small species, as well. The recorded largest anaconda is about 6.6 metres long (22 feet), and there are some records of 35 – 40 feet long snakes, but there were no convincing evidences to prove they could be that long. In terms of weight among serpents, anacondas rank at the top with about 100 kilograms. The colour of the anaconda is olive green with black colour patches. Those green colour blotches are usually arranged in an order along the length of the body. Although these giant snakes could be harmful for other animals, anacondas are not poisonous. They lack poison glands, but the presence of sharp teeth and highly muscled body could immobilise and swallow any prey of their choice. Anaconda is a nocturnal animal, and their breeding ball game between males is interesting, as about 12 males wrap around one female and try to mate for about 2 – 4 continuous weeks.


Pythons are the largest snakes of the world, and they belong to the Family: Pythonidae. There are seven species with four subspecies of them, and the reticulated python is the largest of all with a length of 8.7 metres in the longest known specimen. The natural distribution of python includes Africa and Asia, but they have been accidently introduced to North America. The colourations of the pythons include irregular shaped, dark colour blotches with light colour margins along the body. Those colourations may be the other way around as well depending on the species, but the blotches are never regularly arranged. Pythons are found in the thick and dense forests and have been recorded in mostly dry areas of their habitat, and sometimes they were recorded perching on trees. Studies prove that they prefer a selected diet consisting birds and mammals mostly. Pythons are agile and aggressive attackers, but they do not crush their prey by teeth. Instead, the prey is being crushed by constriction using the powerful muscles. As they have been selectively bred in captivity for different colourations, pythons have become a pet in some places.


What is the difference between Anaconda and Python?

• Anacondas are native to South America while pythons are naturally found in Asian and African tropics.

• Comparatively, anaconda is heavier, but python is longer.

• Python is more agile than anaconda is.

• The colouration patterns are organised and arranged to an order in anaconda but not in pythons.

• Anaconda is a good swimmer and found around water more often than not, whereas python prefers to perch on trees and dry habitats.

• Python is a selective feeder while anaconda is a general predator.

• Pythons are more popular among humans as a pet, but anacondas are not commonly reared as pets.

• Breeding balls and delivering the neonates by females in anaconda is characteristic, while pythons do not form breeding balls but lay eggs and incubate until hatchlings come out.