Last night I went out about midnight on the porch to secure the motorbikes together with some steel cables and big padlock like I do every night.
Something was strange looking on one of the motorbike seats and it too me a second to realize as it started to move – it was an almost 2 meter long green snake!
Well, I love snakes so I immediately asked my wife to bring me the digital camera so I could take some video and photos. Why didn’t I get it myself? I learned something. NEVER take my eyes off the snake – no matter what. I’ve lost a couple that way.
The video was much too dark but I got about 80 photos as I tried to coax it into the neighboring jungle area and away from our group of houses.
The head of this snake is triangular – signaling poisonous, but small. I think the head of a pit viper is usually larger. Either way, I didn’t do anything too crazy, but I had to lift him up with my stick and play with him a bit. He was really slow moving and deliberate… didn’t strike once no matter how I moved him around with my stick.
At one point he climbed up the wall into the window of my neighbor – who wasn’t home yet. She’d have flipped out, I know.
The snake expert, Joachim Bulian, said on his snake site it’s particularly hard to ID the green vipers in Thailand. Well, here’s what he said…
A normal person cannot tell the difference between the green Pit Vipers. The following Pit Vipers, present in Thailand, have a green colour:
* Cryptelytrops (Trimeresurus) albolabris (White-lipped Pit Viper)
* Viridovipera (Trimeresurus) gumprechti (Gumprecht’s Pit Viper)
* Parias (Trimeresurus) hageni Hagen’s Pit Viper
* Cryptelytrops (Trimeresurus) macrops (Large-eyed Pit Viper)
* Popeia (Trimeresurus) popeiorum popeiorum (Popes Pit Viper)
* Popeia (Trimeresurus) fucatus *in the works from MALHOTRA & THORPE (2004) not yet entered
* MALHOTRA & THORPE follows, entered here under the name Popeia
* Parias (Trimeresurus) sumatranus (Sumatra Pit Viper)
* Viridovipera (Trimeresurus) vogeli (Bird Pit Viper)
I’d say from the photos and description on his site that mine is a:
Thai:ThaiSnakeName-95 (ngu kiau hang mai)
But, supposedly it only grows to 116 cm – this one was definitely longer – over a meter and a half.
Here’s a photo that closely matches my snake… the belly was that same color of yellow. The head and eye looks just like it…
Any other guesses?
Oops – update: Snake expert, Joachim Bulian zapped me an email… this is a Boiga cyanea – a Green Cat Snake! They have poison, but are rear-fanged and due to their docile nature are pretty harmless for humans. They grow up to 186 cm – which matches my snake’s size. Picture and more at next post, Thailand’s Cat Snake >
More information needed on Thailand snakes? Try this…
Thailand Snakes FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions and Answers regarding Thailand’s poisonous and nonpoisonous snakes.