The Five Deadliest Snakes in South Africa

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black mamba south africas deadliest snakes February 2016

If you’ve ever had a brown house-snake meander through your living room while you were watching TV, you know exactly how cool you keep under pressure.  If your popcorn hit the ceiling about a minute after you did, then you know you’re not exactly cool under pressure.  If, however, you picked that snake up, named it Reggie, and dress it up as a bulimic supermodel every Halloween, then you probably don’t mind our slippery, legless friends.

But, regardless of whether you like snakes or not, there are some that are simply not to be trifled with.  So, if you were thinking about putting a purple velvet suit on one of the following snakes next Halloween and calling it Prince, don’t.

The Deadliest Snakes in SA

  1. Rhinkals

Don’t let the name fool you, a Rhinkhals is a type of cobra.  But chances are pretty good that, if you did see one, you wouldn’t hang around long enough to look it up in the snake guide that you conveniently carry around with you.  Long story short; it’s a spitting cobra, so… leave.

  1. Boomslang

The only thing scarier than a snake, to someone that is scared of snakes, is a flying snake.  And, while the 2-metre-long boomslang doesn’t have wings, it whizzes around the treetops.  So, the terrifying truth is that this highly venomous snake could well decide to bite you on the face if you wander into its home. Great.

  1. Cape Cobra

So, it’s called a Cape Cobra, but, aside from living in the Eastern and Western Cape, these terrifying beauties can be found in the Free State as well.  Varying from brown, through red, to yellow, this cobra has the signature upright stance when threatened.

  1. Puff Adder

This snake could technically be called the deadliest snake in Africa because it is responsible for the most deaths.  Short and thick with a triangular head, puff adders are extremely well camouflaged, which makes them that much more dangerous.

  1. The Black Mamba

Though dark green or brown in colour, the black mamba takes its name from the colour of its mouth; pitch black.  With the larger snakes growing to around 4.5 metres long, and able to cover 20 kilometres per hour, this highly venomous snake is the most feared serpent on the continent.

Image credit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXzMPaYTrZc

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