The red-bellied black snake is part of the Black Snake family and is one of the most dangerous in Australia – as well as one of the most common.
Although this snake is generally not aggressive and tends to avoid people, the red-bellied black snake will defend itself when threatened. Under duress, it will raise itself up and expand its neck, as a cobra does.
These snakes are often found in homes and gardens along the Sunshine Coast.
With a head barely larger than its neck, this snake is often black in colour and has been known to have a brown snout. The red bellied black snake lacks a well-defined neck as its head merges seamlessly into the body.
The back black scales are glossy and contains vibrant red to pink coloration running down its flanks. The belly scales are red to pink with the hind edge of the scales black. This creates a red and black striped appearance.
Midbody scales of the snake are 17 rows, the ventrals are 170-215 with a divided anal scale. This species is moderately built and can grow to an average length of 1.5 to 2 meters. Males are generally slightly larger than females.
This snake is commonly found in woodlands, forests and swamp lands. They often venture into urban areas and can be encountered in your garden or home.
They hunt for prey in shallow bodies of water and will usually hide in logs, abandoned burrows and grass tussocks.
Their venom contains neurotoxins, myotoxins, and coagulants, which makes the red-bellied black snake extremely dangerous and potentially fatal. Victims may also lose their sense of smell and taste.
Like all Australia elapid snakes, this species is proteroglyphous (front fanged).
The snake’s diet primarily includes frogs and lizards, though it occasionally consumes other snakes.
The red bellied black snake is generally not an aggressive species and will usually flee when approached.
When provoked, it will recoil into a striking stance as a threat, holding its head and front part of its body high while widening and flattening its neck. It may bite as a last resort. A bite from this snake needs to be tended to immediately with the correct first aid.
If you spot this snake, or suspect there may be one living in your home or garden, get in touch with our team. We operate 24/7 and can provide identification, trapping and relocation services for wild snakes. To ensure your safety and the safety of your family and pets, our team always aims to assist you as soon as possible.
Remember to maintain a safe distance from the snake, but keep an eye on it until we get there!
Areas Covered: Caloundra to Noosa; Beerwah to Cooroy;
Montville to Mapleton and all areas in between.