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Thailand’s Black and White Snakes

Malayan Krait (Blue Krait) from Southern Thailand. Common, dangerous, deadly, and size is usually about 1 meter long.
Adult Malayan (Blue) Krait from Thailand. These are common across much of the country, and have a very potent neurotoxic venom. Contact with this krait should be avoided.

One of the biggest problems (and dangers) of herping in Thailand is not knowing which snake you’re looking at. There are many snakes which look close enough to each other and can be misidentified. The black and white snakes are probably the most difficult to distinguish because when juvenile, they can look quite similar in appearance.

Black and White Snakes (as adults or juveniles)

  • Butler’s Wolf Snake – Lycodon butleri
  • Dark (Dusky) Wolf Snake – Lepturophis albofuscus
  • Laotian Wolf Snake – Lycodon laoensis
  • Malayan Bridle Snake – Dryocalamus subannulatus (usually brown and white or brown
  • Malayan Krait (Blue Krait) – Bungarus candidus*
  • Malayan (White) Banded Wolf Snake – Lycodon subcinctus
  • Many-banded Krait – Bungarus multicinctus*

Deadly snakes in the list above are marked with an asterisk (*).

Adult Laotian wolf snake has some yellow where the juvenile of the species only had white.
A small snake found herping Southern Thailand in Krabi called, Dinodon septentrionalis.
A small Lycodon laoensis – Laotian wolf snake.
Malayan Bridle Snakes (Lycodon subcinctus) look just like Malayan Kraits – and yet, not dangerous.
Malayan bridle snake - Dryocalamus subannulatus in banded pattern form from Southern Thailand's Krabi province.
Bridle snake – not sure which.
Bridle snake.
Lycodon subcinctus – non-venomous. Fewer bands than a krait, but more clearly defined than some other black and white snakes.

3 thoughts on “Thailand’s Black and White Snakes

  • at 9:30 am

    What kind of snake about 5 ft. Long. With black and yellow stripes running up body

    • at 10:40 am

      If you mean stripes, a radiated rat snake has black stripes running up the upper half of its body. If you mean bands, a banded krait has bands going around the entire body from neck to tail.

  • at 9:46 am

    I was outside preparing a load for washing. My washing machine has legs on it so it sits raised above the ground by about 10cm. I turn to my left to grab some detergent. After pouring the detergent, I grabbed for a bottle of bleach. It was at this moment, that the snake mentioned above slithered past me from behind. There wasn’t anything other than my washing machine to hide behind (I had just moved in 3 weeks prior). I figured if it didn’t feel the need to bite me, I wasn’t going to see fit to harm it.


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