Feeding ecology and diet

Most species eat other burrowing reptiles, including blind-snakes, wormlizards, or legless lizards. Others have more specialized diets. As their name implies, centipede eaters (Aparattactus) feed almost exclusively on centipedes, which they grab and chew. The prey quickly succumbs to the venom and is swallowed head first. The very elongate quill-snouted snakes feed almost exclusively on wormlizards (Monopeltis sp.). Larger species, such as the purple-glossed snakes (Amblyodip-sas), eat small rodents as well as snakes, while the Natal black snakes (Macrelaps microlepidotus) also eat rain frogs (Breviceps sp.). The unusual fang erection of burrowing asps allows them to crawl past prey within the narrow confines of a burrow and envenomate the prey by stabbing backward.

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