Ptyas mucosus (Linnaeus, 1758)
|Total length||Average 150 - 195 cm, can reach 255 cm.|
|Description||Back light-brown, with light crossbars on anterior two thirds of body and dark crossbars on posterior third and tail.
Barring on forepart of body may be faded or even absent.
Young snakes usually more olive in colour. Some adult specimens may be very dark.
Ventrals whitish. Labials light cream in colour, heavily barred with black.
Tail very long and whip-like. Scales smooth.
Found in a variety of habitats: agricultural fields, shrubland, grassland, around ponds and reservoirs, and edges of rural gardens.
A powerful, aggressive snake.
When restrained, will strike and bite vigorously. Will also defecate in self-defence.
Most adults do not tame or feed well, but one local large adult has lived in captivity for 17 years.
Young specimens more even-tempered, but become more aggressive and wild as they mature.
Commonly seen for sale in snake shops for its meat.
|Diet||Feeds on frogs, toads, birds and rodents. Accepts carrion in captivity.|
|Reproduction||Oviparous. Lays 7-12 eggs which hatch in about 2 months. Hatchling about 30 cm long.|
|Distribution||Common in many open habitats throughout Hong Kong.
Also recorded from a few small islands (Shek Kwu chau, Cheung Chau, Green Island, Tai A Chau, Stonecutters).
Occurs in central and southern China including Taiwan, South and Southeast Asia.
|Conservation Status|| IUCN Redlist: NE (Not Evaluated)
China Redlist: Endangered