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Family: Colubridae

Subfamily: Colubrinae

Genus:  Boiga (Cat Snakes)

Snake_Boiga cyanea
Snake_Boiga cyanea juv

Map_Thailand_67Fotos: J. Bulian                                          - juvenile snake-

Boiga cyanea (Green Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga cyanea (ngu kio bon)

Length: Up to 186 cm

Whole of Thailand. The snake is, however, more common in southern Thailand than in northern or central Thailand.

Boiga cyanea is mainly found in the flat lands. They live in bushes and trees in woods and plantations. These snakes are nocturnal. Young animals are orange/red in colour. The colour changes into brown and then green after approx. year. The animals feed themselves mainly on lizards, frogs, rodents and birds. Other snakes are also eaten on occasion.

The Boiga species is a rearfanged snake. At least one case of poisoning has been recorded in literature. The snake can, however, be counted as harmless for humans as they are not very aggressive.

Snake_Boiga cynodon

Map_Thailand_55Picture: J. Bulian

Boiga cynodon (Dog-toothed Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga cynodon (ngu sae hang ma)

Length: Up to 275 cm

Distribution: In southern Thailand from Pratchuap Khiri Kahn.

The Dog-tooth Cat Snake lives mainly in the trees of lowland rain forests. You will hardly ever meet the snake in cultivated areas or near to human settlements. An exception is poultry farms as the Boiga Cynodon feeds itself almost exclusively on birds and their eggs (also chickens). This species is active at twilight and at night.

Even when attacked, these snakes generally do not bite. If it does come to a poisoning bite, swelling and pain will be felt in the wound area. It can lead to circulation problems. However, this only happens if the snake bites powerfully and massages its venomous into the wound. A self-defence bite is not dangerous.

Snake_Boiga dendrophila

Map_Thailand_68Picture: J. Bulian

Boiga dendrophila melanota
(Banded Mangrove Snake, Yellow ringed Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga dendrophila (ngu plong tong)

Up to 250 cm. In Thailand, the animals normally only reach a length of approx. 2 meters.

Distribution: The Boiga dendrophila is only to be found in Southern Thailand.

The snake resides in rain and mangrove forests. It is mostly found near rivers, brooks, ponds and swamps. This species is nocturnal. The snake feeds almost everything they can catch, including other snakes. If aggravated, the snake makes itself into an S shape, flattens out the front of its body and opens its mouth wide, so that the black inside of the mouth can be seen. The snakes are easily provoked and bite very quickly.

The danger of poisoning is almost non-existent. Only due to size and the aggression of the animals, can it lead to strong bleeding and painful wounds if bitten. Medium venomous, sometimes strong local poisonings!

totenkopf totenkopf

Note: Danger of mistake with:

Snake_Boiga multomaculata

Map_Thailand_37Picture: J. Bulian

Boiga multomaculata (Many-spotted Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga multomaculata (ngu me ta ngao rang nok)

Up to 187 cm. However, most of these animals only reach a length of around  140 cm.

North, east and central Thailand. In southern Thailand it can be found up to around Hua Hin. Further occurrence in southern Thailand is not determined.

A resident of trees and bushes in the lowlands and mountains. These snakes are relatively calm. They usually only eat lizards.

Danger: There is no known venom effect on humans.

Snake_Boiga nigriceps

Map_Thailand_55Picture: J. Bulian

Boiga nigriceps (Red Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga nigriceps (ngu tong fei)

Length: Boiga nigriceps reaches a length of up to 175 cm.

The Boiga nigriceps is only to be found in the extreme south of Thailand.

The snake is nocturnal. It lives in the bushes and trees of primary and secondary forests. It eats rodents, frogs and lizards. They are similar to the Boiga cyanea in their behaviour.

The Boiga species is a rear fanged snake. The snake cannot generally be counted as dangerous to humans , because they are not very aggressive. However, a few cases of intoxinating are known of. You should, however, note that some people are even allergic to bee stings. For this reason, you should not over estimate the toxic effect of a Boiga bite.

Snake_Boiga saengsomi

Picture: J. Bulian

Map_Thailand_68Boiga saengsomi (Banded Green Cat Snake)

Thai: ThaiSnakeName-Boiga saengsomi (ngu kieo dong lai)

Size: Up to 220 cm

In Amphoe Sikao in Trang province and most probably in other districts of the province. This species also seems to habitat in the province of Krabi (Amphoe Khao Phanom). This snake lives in trees and usually lives at heights over 250m above sea level. The last sighting was in 1985.

The snake belongs to the rear fanged snake family. A bite is only dangerous if the snake bites and hangs onto the skin and is allowed to chew the venom into the wound for several minutes. It is otherwise harmless.

If you should have seen this snake or if you have any proof of its occurrence, then send please an e-mail to Joachim Bulian in Suratthani, Thailand or give him a quick call on 0862816661 (Thailand mobile phone)

Snake_Boiga siamensis

Map_Thailand_86Picture: J. Bulian

Boiga siamensis (Grey banded Cat Snake)

Length: Males up to 200 cm, females 240 cm

Distribution: North of the Isthmus of Kra.

Boiga siamensis inhabits the forests up to 1780 m. This snake is activ during the night. About live, food and reproduction in the wild are no data availible. In captivity Boiga samensis feeds on rodents ( mice and rats) and chicklets. In the wild the sanke probabely feeds mainly on birds and their eggs.

Boiga siamensis belongs to the rear fanged snakes In the back of the upper jaws are three elongated grooved fangs A normal bite should be not dangerous to humans as long as the snake does not hold on and chews the poison in the wound.

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