20 Species of Snakes Found in The Western Ghats of India

Western Ghats is the hub for Indian biodiversity and the only remaining rainforests in India. The Western Ghats of India is home to several species of reptiles, Insects, Molluscs and Amphibians. The major population of snake species found in the Western Ghats are belongs to family Uropeltidae but Western Ghats is also habitat to most venomous snakes and non poisonous snakes of India.

Western Ghats is also home to a number of tea and coffee plantations region and five most common poisonous snakes found in Kerala are Indian Cobra, King Cobra, Russell’s Viper, Saw scaled Viper and Krait. Photo Credit:Indiansnakes

King Cobra


King Cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) is the world’s largest venomous snake and mostly found in Agumbe Rainforest of Western Ghats. Western Ghats of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu is home to the magnificent King Cobra,living in the deep jungles by the Ghats and respected above all others snakes.

Malabar Pit Viper


Malabar Pit Viper (Trimeresurus malabaricus) is the highly venomous pit viper species of snake, endemic to the Western Ghats of southwestern India. The Malabar rock pit viper is nocturnal and slow moving snake and commonly found on trees and rocks near streams.

Hump Nosed Pit Viper


Hump Nosed Pit Viper (Hypnale hypnale) is one of the highly venomous pitviper species,found in the Western Ghats of India. This species of vipers are nocturnal, aggressive and listed as highly venomous snake in western coast of India.

Bamboo Pit Viper


Indian Green Pit Viper or Bamboo pit viper found in bamboo forests of southern India but also seen near Harishchandragad in Western Ghats range. Bamboo Pit Viper (Trimeresurus gramineus) is a venomous pit viper snake and has no subspecies.

Horseshoe Pit Viper


Horseshoe Pitviper (Trimeresurus strigatus) found in the Western Ghats region of southern India. The Horseshoe Pit Viper is another most venomous pitviper species and no subspecies are currently recognized.

Large Scaled Pit Viper


Large Scaled Pit Viper (Trimeresurus macrolepis) mostly found in Palakkad Gap mountains of southern Western Ghats. Trimeresurus macrolepis is one of the venomous pitviper species of Western Ghats and no subspecies are currently recognized.

Banded Kukri


Common Kukri (Oligodon arnensis) or Banded kukri snakes are nonvenomous colubrid species of snake,found in Indian subcontinent. Kukri snakes has knife shape teeth and easy to distinguish because of prominent cross bands and characteristic marks.

Green Vine Snake


Green Vine Snake (Ahaetulla nasuta) is mildly venomous tree snake found in India and one of the snake species who giving live birth. This beautiful mildly venomous snake of western ghats is very commonly in the forested areas of the Ghats.

Montane Trinket Snake


Montane Trinket snake species are nonvenomous constrictor species of colubrid,found in Sri Lanka and southern India. The trinket snake species are generally aggressive and Montane Trinket snake is endemic to the Western Ghats.

Wayanad Keelback

Wayanad Keelback (Amphiesma monticola) is a harmless colubrid snake,found in the Kodagu and Wayanad regions of the Western Ghats. This non venomous snake has reddish head and large eye, endemic to western Ghats.

Travancore Wolf Snake


Travancore Wolf Snake (Lycodon travancoricus) mostly found in South Indian states of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. These are of nonvenomous species of snake and has dark brown body with yellow bands.

Beddome’s Cat Snake


Beddome’s Cat Snake (Boiga beddomei) is a colubrid species of snake, found in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra state and also found in Sri Lanka. Boiga beddomei snakes are mildly venomous, mostly arboreal and nocturnal in nature.

Khaire’s Black Shieldtail


A new species of snake called Khaire’s black shieldtail (Melanophidium khairei) has been discovered in the Western Ghats of India. This new snake species belongs to family of Uropeltidae and mostly lives underground,Its first such discovery of snake after a span of 144 years.

Giri’s Bronzeback Tree Snake


Giri’s Bronzeback Tree Snake (Dendrelaphis Girii) is a new species of bronzeback tree snake, endemic to Southern Western Ghats in India. Dendrelaphis girii first spotted in Amboli village and has a black coloured stripe, they were commonly called as bronzeback tree snakes.

Indian Rat Snake


Indian Rat Snake (Ptyas mucosa) is a harmless species of colubrid snake, found in all over India and Southeast Asia. Ptyas mucosa are non poisonous fast moving snakes and the most favourite food of the King Cobra in Western Ghats of India.

Indian Rock Python


Indian Rock Python (Python molurus) found in wide range of habitats in India, including rocky foothills,swamps,grasslands and rainforest. Python molurus are non-venomous with yellow and black in color but depending upon its habitat.

Indian Cobra


Indian Cobra (Naja naja) is the most dangerous snakes in India,found in the Indian subcontinent. The Palni hills,kerala rainforest,Tea and coffee plants in the Western Ghats are the best known habitat of spectacled cobra.

Russell’s Viper


Russell’s Viper (Daboia russelii) found in throughout the Indian subcontinent and member of big four most poisonous snakes of India. Daboia are aggressive to human and responsible for causing the most snakebite incidents in India.

Saw Scaled Viper


Saw Scaled Viper (Echis carinatus) also called as death viper is one of the smallest member of viper found in India and responsible for causing the most snakebite cases and deaths. However Saw Scaled Viper found in the dry regions of India but some time appear in the hilly areas of Western Ghats in Maharashtra.

Indian Krait


Common Indian Krait (Bungarus caeruleus) is the most venomous snake in India. Indian Krait is one of the top five most common poisonous snakes found in Kerala,Indian Cobra, King Cobra, Russel’s Viper and Saw-scaled viper are being others.

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