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Snakes of Singapore

Singapore is home to 67 different species of snakes. Due to our tropical environment, snakes are active all throughout the year in Singapore. They come in a variety of sizes, from the 20-centimetre-long Brahminy Blind Snake to the over-9-meter-long Reticulated Python.

Snakes are being pushed back into more natural habitats as a result of the country becoming increasingly urbanised. The issue is that these are still close to homes and structures. Snakes can appear in sewers or in the backyards of houses. There is a slight chance you may have to deal with an unexpected snake presence inside or outside your home. It is therefore good to be aware of which species are harmful and which are dangerous as it might be difficult to distinguish venomous snakes from non-venomous snakes.

Significant ecological functions

  • Pythons, for example, are a key biological deterrent for the local rodent population.

  • In a food chain that is balanced, snakes play an important role as prey for larger mammals and birds as well as predators of tiny creatures

Snakes are often timid animals and will attempt to slither away from people. Snakes are often not hostile and won't strike unless provoked or disturbed. Keep your cool and maintain a safe distance if you do happen to see a live snake.

7 Species of Venomous Snakes Native to Singapore

Commonly Sighted Snakes

1. King Cobra

Ophiophagus Hannah


The largest venomous snake in the world, the King Cobra's venom is lethal. The king cobra is a snake that inhabits lowlands and very high altitudes. It eats lizards, rodents, and other snakes.

Physical Characteristics:

  • larger hood when extended out entirely

  • large head protection

  • large body

  • With a light yellow underside, they are black, light brown, and dark brown.

  • can rise up to a height of six feet.

  • can make a growling hissing noise.

2. Equatorial Spitting Cobra

Naja sumatranus

The Equatorial Spitting Cobra is a venomous snake that spits venom directly into its victim's eyes. Like rats and other amphibians, it goes food hunting at night. Cool areas like garden walls, sewers, and shelters are where it can be found. If not immediately rinsed away, the snake's poison can permanently harm eye tissues, while its bite can instantly kill any living thing.

Physical Characteristics:

  • the colour black to bluish-black

  • hood that raises when angered

  • able to stand tall

  • able to spit poison into a tormentor's eyes


3. Banded Krait

Bungarus fasciatus


The venomous banded krait forages seeks food at night. It feeds on fish, lizards, cats, rodents, and other snakes in order to survive. The Banded Krait frequents regions near water, termite mounds, and rodent burrows. This snake may bite anyone who approaches it if it feels threatened, but are generally docile when undisturbed.

Physical Characteristics:

  • Head to tail are striped in black and white.

  • a dark head

  • the triangular-sectioned body


4. Wagler's Pit Viper

Tropidolaemus wagleri

Wagler's Pit Viper can be found in mangroves and in lowland forests in Singapore. Although venomous, this species of Pit Viper is generally not considered to be aggressive. 

Wagler's Pit Viper is generally found resting in low vegetation, or many metres above the ground typically on trees. 


Physical Characteristics:

  • Triangular head, very distinct from body which is covered in keeled scales

  • Adult females are black above with green spots and yellow bands

  • males are green with pairs of red and white spots or short bars along the back and a red tail.

  • may grow to a length of 2 metres

5. Shore Pit Viper

Trimeresurus purpureomaculatus

The Shore Pit Viper is known to be unpredictable and should be approached with caution. They have a possibility of striking readily at any threat, and its venom can cause serious illness or even kill. By day it can be found on low branches, in mangroves and coastal forests.

Physical Characteristics:

  • Dark grey or purplish-brown to a weakly-patterned brown, with a white stripe along each flank, or even greenish-yellow with dark mottling.

  • The scales are ridged

6. Malayan Blue Coral Snake

 Calliophis bivirgatus

The Blue Malayan Coral Snake looks beautiful, but is highly venomous. Its primary food source is other snakes. It dwells amongst the leaf-litter on the forest floor, but seems to come out in the morning especially when the leaf litter is damp/wet. Possible encounters could be during forest trails.

Physical Characteristics:

  • Red head, tail and belly

  • The top is dark blue to black

  • broad blue stripe on the sides

7. Malayan Banded Coral Snake

Calliophis intestinalis


Another snake with lethal venom is the Banded Malayan Coral Snake (Calliphis intestinalis, scientific name). It searches for other snakes to feed on at night when it is active. They typically live in forests, parks, and gardens.

Physical Characteristics:

  • the following physical traits:

  • with a crimson stripe across the length of the body's top side.

  • shining red tail

  • On the underside, there are contrasting black and white stripes.

  • can reach a height of 50 cm.

1. Paradise Tree Snake (Chrysopelea paradisi)

2. Common Wolf Snake (Lycodon capucinus) 

3. Painted Bronzeback (Dendrelaphis pictus)

4. Oriental Whip Snake (Ahaetulla prasina)

5. Reticulated Python (Malayopython reticulatus)

6. Twin-barred Tree Snake (Chrysopelea pelias)

7. Striped Bronzeback (Dendrelaphis caudolineatus)

8. Elegant Bronzeback (Dendrelaphis formosus)

9. Striped Kukri Snake (Oligodon octolineatus)

10. Malayan Racer (Coelognathus flavolineatus)

11. Dog-toothed Cat Snake (Boiga cynodon)

12. Indochinese Rat Snake (Ptyas korros)

13. Equatorial Spitting Cobra (Naja sumatranus)

Get in touch!

128 Tuas South Ave 3, #06-03

JTC Space @ Tuas Biomedical Park, Singapore 637370

Tel: (+65) 8810 3699


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