Green Keelback – Assumed Venomous

Rhabdophis nigrocinctus, Thailand. This is a venomous and poisonous snake with nuchal glands.
This Rhabdophis nigrocinctus was in Phuket, Thailand. ©2015 Elliot Pelling.

Rhabdophis nigrocinctus (Green Keelback)

[Last Updated: 26 November 2019]

Thai: (noo ly sab keow kwan dam)

Appearance: Green snake (งูเขียว) with thin black bands down the length of the body, a pink and red neck and head with strong black diagonal lines from the eyes – similar to other Thailand keelbacks.

Length: Up to 90 cm

Habitat / Range: Thailand and Southeast Asia. Found in a range of areas, usually fairly close to water. This snake is terrestrial – ground-based, and is very common in Phuket, Thailand and Phang Nga, and across much of Thailand. Here in Krabi, I have never seen one.

Notes: These snakes are commonly found near water, lakes, ponds, and gardens.

Active Time? Daylight hours, especially dawn and dusk near water.

Food: Frogs, poisonous Bufo toads, and fish.

Defensive Behavior: Rarely strike.

Venom Toxicity: Though this snake is not known to have caused medically significant bites with envenomation, it is closely related to Rhabdophis subminiatus which has proven capable of deadly bites. Do be very careful and treat these snakes as venomous and potentially deadly.

Offspring: Nothing known.

Green keelback snake (Rhabdophis nigrocinctus), a potentially dangerous snake because it is related to the venomous R. subminiatus..
A beautiful Rhabdophis nigrocinctus (green keelback) from Tub Kaak Subdistrict of Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand.

Green Keelback Scientific Classification:

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Colubridae
Genus: Rhabdophis
Species: Rhabdophis nigrocinctus

#GreenSnake #งูเขียว

Vern

Snake posts by Vern Lovic. Amateur herpetologist roaming about Thailand on field herping tours and events to find king cobras, kraits, vipers, corals, keelbacks, and other snakes native to Thailand. FYI - Thailand has over 200 snake species. Here's our latest book with detailed information on Thailand's 35 Deadly Snakes. "Is That Snake In Your House Dangerous? Identify Deadly Thailand Snakes In Under 5 Minutes!" INFO HERE.

4 thoughts on “Green Keelback – Assumed Venomous

  • October 31, 2017 at 12:46 pm
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    Recently, in Cambodia, I encountered a yellow snake, it was about a metre in length and very skinny. I cannot find any reference to this snake, any thoughts?

    Reply
    • November 1, 2017 at 8:31 am
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      How thin? Sounds like maybe a yellow form of Ahaetulla prasina.

      Reply
  • November 11, 2019 at 8:41 pm
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    Hi Vern,
    I live in Khao Sok National Park, and this snake is the most common on my property, I see one of them almost every day. They are amazingly beautiful and can’t be bothered when approached closely. Some of the local guides free handle them regularly. At night time though, when you disturb their sleep, they behave totally different. More aggressive…
    If you ever want to visit Khao Sok, please contact me. We have so many snakes here, you’d love it.

    Reply
    • November 12, 2019 at 12:36 pm
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      Thanks! I’ll send you an email in a few minutes. Cheers

      Reply

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