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Zoom in on 3 truly astonishing snakes!

The king cobra has a deadly bite

When threatened, the cobra raises a third of its body from the ground and dilates its neck to make a sort of headdress. Reaching up to 5.50 m, the king cobra is the longest of the venomous snakes, and mainly preys on other snakes through rapid attacks. Although its venom is not toxic to other snakes, it emits enough in one bite to kill an elephant.

It lives mainly in tropical forests where it can move easily in trees, on land and in water. It is the only snake in the world that builds nests for its precious eggs.

The black and yellow sea snake

This snake, with a unique appearance, has a black upper body and a contrasting yellow and cream underside. Unlike most sea snakes which tend to stay close to coastlines, it lives in the open ocean and can be found in the tropical and subtropical Pacific and Indian Oceans.

It has a paddle-shaped tail that enhances its swimming abilities, and it moves in sideways undulations near the surface. It can move quite quickly, but often goes with the flow. Capable of diving up to 15 m, it can stay underwater for three and a half hours. This snake has a salt gland under its tongue to excrete salt ingested into the sea and prevent dehydration.

The serpent of paradise can fly…

As its name suggests, this paradise snake spends most of its time in the trees and foliage of rainforests. It is capable of flying or more precisely of gliding between trees over a distance of up to 100 m.

A skilled climber, it uses the scales on its belly to climb and, once it is ready to take flight, it swings from a branch in the shape of a J, and chooses its destination and path before to project his body upwards. He pulls in his stomach and expands his ribs, which creates a sort of parachute that almost doubles the width of his body and helps him in his descent. It undulates as it hovers and even controls its direction.

A paradise snake (Chrysopelea paradisi). -Lauren Suryanata/Shutterstock

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The World of Animals & Nature is a quarterly magazine.
The World of Animals & Nature is a quarterly magazine. – The World of Animals n°46

The World of Animals & Nature is a magazine dedicated to wildlife from around the world. Through captivating stories and sublime photographs, the magazine offers a true visual safari in the heart of nature.

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