Olive seasnake

Aipysurus laevis

SUBFAMILY

Hydrophiinae

TAXONOMY

Aipysurus laevis Lacepede, 1804, Arafura Sea.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

None known.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

This species has an average length of 47-79 in (1.2-2 m). One of the largest of the fully marine seasnakes, it is thick bodied and highly variable in color and pattern, ranging from light brown to dark with speckles.

DISTRIBUTION

Warm tropical waters of northern Australia and New Guinea. HABITAT

This species inhabits coral reefs.

BEHAVIOR

This seasnake is unusually curious. Many scuba divers and snorkelers have experienced close encounters with olive seasnakes.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Olive seasnakes eat a wide variety of fish.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

This live-bearing snake gives birth to two to six young.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

Because of curiosity, abundance, and large size, the olive seasnake is considered dangerous to humans. ♦

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