The World’s 30 Deadliest Snakes
Humans have long had a fear of snakes. Perhaps there is a simple reason why - many snakes around the world are extremely deadly! Here is a list of 30 of the world’s deadliest snakes, hailing from Africa, Australia, Asia and the Americas.
While the venom of the king cobra is not the most potent among venomous snakes, this snake has an incredible amount of neurotoxin. Just one bite has enough neurotoxin to kill 20 people. The good news? King cobras tend to avoid humans. The bad news? King cobras are very aggressive if they feel cornered.
Just hearing the word "rattlesnake" fills most people with dread. There is a good reason why: They are venomous snakes and deadly when they bite a human. However, there is good news. If a rattlesnake bite is quickly treated, it is rarely fatal to humans.
The black mamba is native to southern and eastern Africa. They are long snakes that can reach up to 14 feet long. They are the longest venomous snake in Africa and one of the fastest snakes in the world. They can slither at speeds reaching 12.5 miles an hour.
Despite its name, the Egyptian Cobra can be found throughout the majority of North Africa, north of the Sahara and even in parts of East and West Africa. It likes both dry and humid habitats. Its average length is from 3.3 to 6.6 feet, but it can reach up to 9.8 feet in length.
Eastern Brown Snake
The eastern brown snake is one of Australia’s many snakes. It is found in a variety of habitats, including rainforests, mountain regions, woodlands and savannah grasslands. They are often found in agricultural areas. This is not a snake that shies away from human-inhabited areas. It is one of the most frequently encountered venomous snakes in Australia.
Ocellated Carpet Viper
The ocellated carpet viper, also known as the West African carpet viper, is native to West Africa and can be found throughout the region. This snake is only two feet long, but causes more human deaths than all other African species. Thankfully, an antivenom for the snake exists.
Despite its name, the Indian cobra is not only found in India, but in the Middle East, China and Indonesia. It grows to about 3.3 feet in length. This is a snake that is not shy. It will live in areas where there are humans, but the good news is that it usually won’t attack humans unless it is threatened.
Russell’s viper is a very venomous snake native to Asia. It causes thousands of deaths every year, namely because it is a snake that is not afraid to inhabit areas where there are farmlands. When a person is bitten by this snake, they experience a number of symptoms, including pain, vomiting and kidney failure.
Indian Saw-Scaled Viper
Although the Indian saw-scaled viper is a small snake (as an adult it is 12 to 20 inches long) it’s one of the four most common venomous snakes in India. This snake is also found in Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka.
The tiger snake is one of Australia’s venomous snakes. Although it’s an aggressive snake with toxic venom, most Australians will not encounter it, as it is shy. It prefers to flee rather than deal with conflict. If a tiger snake feels threatened it will strike, and its venom has a blood-clotting agent and a nerve paralyzer.
Faint-Banded Sea Snake
The faint-banded sea snake is also known as Belcher’s sea snake, after Sir Edward Belcher who discovered the snake. It is native to the Indian Ocean region, which includes the Philippines, New Guinea, Thailand, Australia and the Solomon Islands. It is a venomous species of the elapid sea snake.
The Blue Krait is also known as the Malayan krait. A member of the elapid family of snakes, it is native to Southeast Asia and can be as long as 3.5 feet. It likes to hang out in rocky places, waterways and forests. It will live in lowlands and elevations as high as 3,900 feet.
As its name implies, the Philippine Cobra is native to the Philippines. It is also known as the Northern Philippines cobra and is one of three species of spitting cobras. It is able to spit venom as far as far as 9.8 feet with amazing accuracy.
African Puff Adder
The African Puff Adder is native to Africa and is spread throughout the continent. It is a snake that likes to stay in hiding, and will not give itself away when approached by hissing or striking. It belongs to the viper family. They like to live in savannahs and grasslands.
The terciopelo (velvet in Spanish) viper is native to Central and South America. It is a pit viper in the family Crotalidae that can reach 8 feet. Its head can be up to 4 inches wide. This snake is also called barba amarilla (yellow beard in Spanish).
Common Death Adder
The common death adder is another venomous Australian snake, and this snake has one of the fastest strikes of all Australia’s venomous snakes. Its venom is a neurotoxin that causes paralysis. The good news is that there is an anti-venom and with quick treatment, a person who gets bit by this snake is likely to survive.
Eastern Green Mamba
Native to southern Africa, the eastern green mamba can be found in Tanzania, eastern Zimbabwe and South Africa. An adult snake can reach up to 8½ feet, but the average length is 6 to 7 feet. This is a snake whose vivid green coloring gives an indication as to its preferred habitat. It likes to live in woodlands and coastal bushlands.
Jameson’s Green Mamba
Named by a Scottish doctor and zoologist in honor of Robert Jameson, Jameson’s green mamba is native to Central and West Africa, but it can be found in parts of East Africa. It is a snake that likes to live in a variety of habitats, including rainforests, savannahs and woodlands. It grows to an average length of 4.9 to 7.2 feet.
The range of the copperhead snake extends from Massachusetts to Texas. It is a large snake for North America, reaching a length of 24 to 40 inches. It is a pit viper, which means that it possesses facial pits that can sense heat, and it uses those pits to detect both prey and predators.
Olive Brown Sea Snake
The olive brown sea snake can grow to over 6 feet long and generally lives on coral reefs. Its range includes the waters around Australia, Indonesia and New Guinea. It can remain hidden during daylight due to light-sensing organs in its tail. It is a snake that prefers to be active at night and will only come out during the day to take a breath.
Common Yellow-Lipped Sea Krait
The common yellow-lipped sea krait is native to Indonesia’s Bay of Bengal and islands of the South Pacific. It can grow from 3 to 5 feet long and is basically a cobra snake that learned to live in the ocean, as well as go to land to both bask and reproduce.
The boomslang is not a terribly large snake, it typically grows from 3 to 5 feet long. It’s commonly found over most of sub-Saharan Africa and in a range of habitats, including dry savannahs, coastal thickets and semi-desert regions. Although it is a tree snake, It tends to prefer open areas to forests.
The Papuan taipain is a subspecies of the coastal taipan found in Papua New Guinea. It ranges in length from 5.9 to 6.5 feet. There have been a few found to be 11 feet long, but they are rarely over 8.5 feet. It is a snake that can adapt well to human activity and is often found in residential areas.
The jararaca, also known as a Brazilian pit viper and the Bothropoides jararaca, is found in southern Brazil, northern Argentina and northeastern Paraguay. It likes a variety of habitats, including savannahs, semitropical forests and cultivated fields. The name jararaca comes from the Tupi words yarará and ca, which mean "large snake."
African Forest Cobra
The African forest cobra is found in numerous African nations, including Uganda, South Africa, Angola and Mozambique. It is an adaptable snake that can adjust to a variety of surroundings and has been found in savannahs, thickets, rainforests, wetlands, grasslands and coastal areas. It can even live at heights of over 9,000 feet.
Native to Australia, the Inland Taipan is one of the most venomous snakes in the world. Just one bite from this snake carries enough venom to kill 100 adult men or 250,000 mice. It is 6 to 8 feet in length, and its back is either brown or light green, with a belly that ranges from light yellow to cream.
The many-banded krait hails from Hong Kong and reaches an average of 4.9 feet. It can be found all over Hong Kong. It likes to be active at night, so encounters with people are less likely. It is a shy snake that prefers to stay hidden.
Dubois’ Sea Snake
The Dubois’ sea snake is found in Australia between the Exmouth Gulf in Western Australia and Hervey Bay in Queensland, and on the Ashmore Reef and Sahul Shelf. It is also found in Papua New Guinea and New Caledonia. It is often seen in shallow water near coral reefs of 9.8 to 13 feet deep, but can live in depths of up to 262 feet.
The Mojave green is a subspecies of rattlesnake found in the Southwestern U.S. and northwestern Mexico. It likes to live in desert regions, lower ranges of mounts and scrub brush areas. It reaches a length between 2 and 4 feet. This snake is a pit viper that possesses a pit on each side of its head which can sense heat.
Eastern Coral Snake
Native to the southeastern U.S., the eastern coral snake is a relative of the sea snake, mamba and cobra. It prefers to live in wooded, sandy and marshy areas. It spends most of its life either burrowed underground or in leaf piles.