Bandybandy snake

Vermicella annulata

SUBFAMILY Hydrophiinae

TAXONOMY

Calamaria annulata Gray, 1849, Australia.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

None known.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

This snake has an average length of 24-39 in (0.6-1 m). It has an alternating pattern of black and white bands.

DISTRIBUTION

Queensland, New South Wales, and parts of Victoria and South Australia.

HABITAT

This snake can be found in almost any habitat.

BEHAVIOR

The bandy-bandy snake is a secretive and shy burrower. Usually seen only after heavy rains, it is well known for a defensive display in which it alternates between thrashing and contorting itself into one or more large, vertically oriented coils, apparently to frighten predators.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

This snake feeds exclusively on blindsnakes nearly equal in size to itself.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

The female lays two to 13 eggs.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

This species is venomous but poses almost no threat to humans because of its small size and distribution in generally uninhabited areas.

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