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Thailand Snakes FAQ

The ultimate Thailand Snake, a king cobra swimming in a Thailand freshwater stream.
Everyone loves a king cobra. But not everyone loves a king cobra in their backyard. ©Vern Lovic

[Page Updated 7 May 2023]

Here I’ll answer common questions about the snakes of Thailand.

What are the most viewed pages on

How can I contact you?

Look to the top right of this sentence – click the About link. The Contact link is in the drop-down menu.

What snakes are in Thailand?

There are over 200 snake species in Thailand. Common snakes in Thailand include venomous and non-venomous species. We have cobras, pit vipers, coral snakes, kraits, and one keelback on the venomous side. Non-venomous snakes include tree and whip snakes, rat snakes, racers, kukri snakes, cat-eyed snakes, pipe snakes, keelbacks, freshwater and marine snakes.

Am I at risk for snakebite in Thailand?

Watch the Thailand Snakes Overview video here.

What is field herping for Snakes?

Info here.

Are there a lot of snakes in Thailand?

Yes, there are plenty! Are you likely to see a snake in Thailand on your vacation? No. Maybe there is a 2% chance you’ll even see a snake during your vacation. If you are LOOKING for snakes for hours at a time on your vacation, there is about a 60% chance you’ll see one.

Are there snakes in Phuket?

Yes, there are lots of snakes in Phuket. Again, you are not likely to see one unless you’re dedicated to looking for them in the forest or on the edge of the forest or lots of greenery.

Are there snakes in Bangkok? Chiang Mai? Koh Samui? Phi Phi? Railay Beach?

Yes, there are snakes all over the country – in big cities and on islands. There are very few snakebites in Thailand by venomous snakes, and the public hospitals all are supposed to have antivenom for dangerous snakes. Visit the hospital after any bite to reassure yourself that you’ll recover fine.

Where can I get good snake gear?

Midwest makes tongs that most people use. They’re not perfect and the space is wide-open for a company that makes tongs that don’t break snakes’ ribs.

What should I do if bitten by a snake in Thailand?

1. Remember as much about the snake as you can and get to the hospital immediately. Snakes are very hard to identify. Some Thailand snakes can cause severe symptoms in as little as 10 minutes with a good bite.

2. Don’t waste time sitting around waiting for symptoms to arise before going to the hospital. Minutes are crucial with venomous snakes.

3. If you can’t get to a hospital yourself, look at the emergency phone numbers in the upper right of this page.

HERE is a better page telling what to do for snakebite in Thailand.

How common are venomous snakes in Thailand?

Very, very common, but you’re not likely to see one during your stay of 1-2 weeks. If you live in Thailand, you will see them eventually.

Where are most venomous snakes located in Thailand?

They are literally all over Thailand. Many of the venomous snakes here in Thailand call vast stretches of Asia their home.

Should I kill all the snakes I see around my house?

No, for 2 reasons.

1. The snake may bite you during your attempt.
2. There are Thai ‘snake guys’ in every town that can take the snake away for you without killing it. Reach them by having a Thai person call the police and ask them to send the snake guys to your location.

How strong is the venom of Thailand snakes?

Very strong in some cases. The cobras and kraits are especially dangerous and able to incapacitate you quickly. King cobras have killed a number of people (that I know) in 10 minutes or less..

A baby krait less than 10 inches long, in Burma (same as we have in Thailand) killed a world famous herpetologist – Joe Slowinski in 30 hours because he couldn’t reach a hospital with a ventilator and other crucial technology.

If you haven’t read the story – it’s a great book | The Snake Charmer >

Which is the most deadly snake in Thailand?

Krait (any Thailand species) venom is probably the most potent against humans. It acts on the nervous system, killing the nerve impulses. This paralyzes muscles and eventually causes respiratory failure. The good news is, you are very, very unlikely to see a krait in Thailand.

The snake that kills the most people in Thailand is probably the Malayan Pit Viper. Impossible to say with any confidence because accurate statistics are not easily found here.

Which Thailand snake kills the most people?

The Malayan Pit Viper, the Malayan krait, the monocled cobra, and the banded krait kill more people in Thailand than other snakes. Another very dangerous snake is the Russell’s Viper which is found in certain parts of Thailand. Russell’s vipers kill more people worldwide than any other snake on the planet, but Thailand has them confined to a specific locale.

Keep in mind that a vast number of snake bite cases go unreported, or deaths are reported as something else. With krait bites, they can occur at night as someone rolls over on one. The bite can be painless and the person wakes up paralyzed and soon dies because nobody knows what happened. They are probably assumed to have passed away during sleep.

What should I do if I encounter a snake in the forest?

If it is on the ground and you are close to it – within 1 meter, you should very slowly move back away from it. Cobras that have already hooded up like to strike when you are backing away fast. If you go slow enough that they cannot tell you are backing away – you’ll probably be OK.

If it is green and in a tree, you should move back quickly from it. Vipers have heat-sensing organs that will trigger the snake to bite automatically if it feels like you present danger.

If it’s a viper on the ground (green or brown) – same idea, move as fast as you can away.

What does “Snake in the Grass” mean?

See this page.

What Other Animals / Insects can sting or bite? Which are Venomous/Poisonous?

Here is a page about other venomous bugs and animals that can hurt us.

What Are Snakes Afraid Of?

Many things! Here is some info.

4 thoughts on “Thailand Snakes FAQ”

  1. We have two cobras living underneath our house which come out and crawl around our entry area..and back of kitchen area…and have reared up to bite when approached. How can we get rid of them? Is using sulfur… to put down in their nesting area…in the holes that go under the house… a good idea?

    • not sure except to catch them with pvc pipe and a noose on the end. You can call the local ambulance guys in your area and tell them you have cobras. They’ll know the snake guys in your area. Cheers and good luck.

      • I put moth balls under my house and everything has gone bugs snakes ie. Rattlers and spiders. Mothballs contain sulphur so it may work well.

        • Some people do that and notice nothing changes. I would reconsider putting any chemicals in a place you inhale them on a daily basis.


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