Scientific Classification

Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Reptilia
Order Squamata
Family Elapidae
Genus Ophiophagus
Species O. hannah
Scientific Name Ophiophagus hannah
king cobra
King Cobra ©detroitzoo.org

King Cobra Description

  • The king cobra is the world’s longest venomous snake.
  • Male cobras are larger than the females.
  • It can detect the movement of its prey 100 m (330 ft) from a source.
  • King cobras are so venomous that their one bite contains as much as 200 to 500 mg of venom (enough to kill 20 people). It can kill humans in 30 minutes after the strike.
  • Females are highly aggressive when they guard the eggs.
  • They have poor eyesight and they cannot see anything that is not moving.
  • When threatened the king cobra lifts the front part and spread the hood.

Size & Weight

Adults:

  • TOTAL-LENGTH: 3 to 4 m (9.8 to 13.1 ft)
  • WEIGHT: 6 kg (13 lb)

Newborns

  • LENGTH: 45 to 55 cm (18 to 22 in)

Largest Specimen:

  • LENGTH: 5 to 18.8 ft (5.6 to 5.7 m)
  • WEIGHT: 7 kg (28 lb)
king cobra
King cobra hatchlings

Habitat

Dense highland forests; elevation 2,000 meters

Range

India, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Nepal, Bhutan, Singapore, Burma, Philippines, China, Vietnam, Thailand

Diet

Rat snakes, small pythons, rodents, lizards, birds, eggs

Reproduction

20 – 40 eggs

Mating Period

January – March

Egg-laying Period

April – June

Sexual Maturity

5 – 6 years

Lifespan

20 years (wild)

Group Name

Quiver

Predators

Mongoose

Call

Hisses

Behavior

Aggressive

Conservation Status

Vulnerable