King cobra

Ophiophagus hannah

King cobra is the longest venomous snake with a length ranging from 5.6 to 5.7m. The venom of this snake is very potent which causes death in a very short time. Regardless of its name cobra, this species does not belong to genus Naja but belongs to its own genus. It is considered to be very dangerous for several reasons and has a fearsome reputation. Distribution of this species ranges from Northern India, east to southern People’s Republic of China, including Hongkong and Hainan; south throughout the Malay Peninsula and east to western Indonesia and Philippines. They thrive in dense open forest, bamboo thickets, adjacent agricultural areas and mangrove swamps. Like other snakes, king cobras are threatened from destruction of their habitats.


King cobra body is yellow, green, brown or black. Its belly is cream or pale yellow and the scales are smooth. Young king cobra has a shiny black with narrow yellow bands. It has two short, fixed fangs in front of the mouth that serves as the passage of venom into the prey. The head of the adult king cobra is massive and bulky in appearance. This species is oviparous and lays 21-40 eggs. Breeding season usually occurs from January through April. Average lifespan of king cobra is 17.1 years. They hunt during the day and are mostly feed on larger harmless species like Asian rat snakes, dhamans and pythons up to 10 ft in length.