Do you want to learn about the types of snakes found in Guinea?

Types of snakes in Guinea

If so, you have come to the right place. In the article below, I have listed the MOST COMMON snakes you can expect to see. Unfortunately, there are so many snakes that live in Guinea that it would be impossible to list each one. 🙂

 

You’ll see that the snakes in Guinea are very different from each other. They range from venomous species to snakes that use constriction to immobilize their prey. In addition, certain snakes are common to find living around people. For each species, you will find out how to identify that snake correctly, along with pictures, interesting facts, and RANGE MAPS!

 

Here are 4 types of snakes that live in Guinea:

 


#1. Puff Adder

  • Bitis arietans

Also known as the African Puff Adder and Common Puff Adder

Common Guinea snakes

Identifying Characteristics:

  • Adults are 100-150 cm (39-59 in) long.
  • They are commonly gray to dusty brown, with yellow chevrons on their backs.
  • There are two dark bands on the head, one on the crown and one between the eyes.
  • Male Puff Adders are usually larger than females.

 

Puff Adders are one of the most dangerous snakes in Guinea.

 

This ill-tempered native snake roams savannas, grasslands, and – to the great misfortune of inhabitants – densely populated areas. The Puff Adder gets its name from how it inflates itself when threatened. Instead of moving away, it will hiss a warning to intruders before inflating and striking.

 

Its distinctive chevron pattern in yellow, white, and brown colors allows the Puff Adder to blend into its surroundings. This camouflage is particularly useful for its lifestyle as an ambush predator. Be careful where you wander because this highly-venomous, fast-striking snake seems to come out of nowhere.

The Puff Adder’s venom contains a cytotoxin that can kill a healthy adult human within a day. Their potent venom and tendency to loiter around footpaths make this snake one to avoid. Watch your step!

 


#2. Blanding’s Tree Snake

  • Toxicodryas blandingii

Also known as Blanding’s Cat Snake, Black and Yellow Tree Snake, Brown Tree Snake

Common snakes found in Guinea

Identifying Characteristics:

  • These are thick-bodied snakes with slender tails, measuring 160-279 cm (63-110 in) long.
  • Females and subadults are brown and spotted, while males are black and yellow.
  • They have short, broad heads distinct from their narrow necks.
  • Vertical slits punctuate their large, dark eyes.

 

The Blanding’s Tree Snake makes its home in rainforests and wooded savannas south of the Sahara desert. As an exceptionally talented climber, it can be found up to 30 meters (98 feet) off the ground in the trees.

This rear-fanged snake hunts by moving slowly across intertwining branches to inspect the cracks and hollows of trunks. They have an appetite for rodents, lizards, chameleons, and bird eggs.

 

You might chance upon it in parks and gardens searching for prey. Occasionally, this snake wanders inside buildings to hunt roosting bats. It inflates its body and opens its mouth wide as a warning before striking. While Blanding’s Tree Snakes are venomous, they don’t pose a significant threat to humans.

 


#3. Brown House Snake

  • Boaedon fuliginosus

Also known as the Common African House Snake, Sooty House Snake, Black House Snake, Olive House Snake

Snakes of Guinea

Identifying Characteristics:

  • Adults average a length of 60-150 cm (24-59 in).
  • Juveniles are solid black, while adults are dark brown or gray with faint stripes and spots.
  • The scales are smooth and iridescent, appearing white when they reflect light.
  • Its body is thinner at the sides.

 

The Brown House Snake is one of the most common snakes in Guinea.

Its name hints at its habit of visiting homes, which is where most people see this species. However, this nocturnal snake can also thrive in woodlands, savannas, scrublands, and grasslands.

Brown House Snakes seek small mammals and reptiles as a food source. They put their prey into a stranglehold and swallow them whole without chewing. They particularly enjoy mice, so if you’re dealing with an infestation, these snakes might be nearby.

 

Luckily, the Brown House Snake is non-venomous and timid. It’s likely to flee or curl up tightly into a corner if threatened.

 


#4. Black-necked Spitting Cobra

  • Naja nigricollis

Types of snakes in Guinea

  • A. Morph #1: Black or gray body with pink bars on the broad neck and a reddish belly.
  • B. Morph #2: Light brown or yellow body with no neck bands.
  • C. Morph #3: White and black stripes on the body or solid white with dark eyes.
  • Average length is 1-2 m (4-7 ft).

 

Look for these snakes in Guinea near streams and rivers in savannas.

Black-necked Spitting Cobras are highly adaptable and can be active day or night. This far-ranging snake’s prey includes small vertebrates on the ground or bird eggs in trees.

When confronting possible threats, Black-necked Spitting Cobras rise from the ground and spread their impressive neck hoods. Then, true to their name, they will spit venom to blind their aggressors. Keep your eyes covered because these cobras have amazing aim and can hit their target up to seven meters away!

 

Black-necked Spitting Cobra bites can cause symptoms such as swelling, blistering, extreme pain, and loss of limb function. In worst-case scenarios, death may occur due to paralysis of the diaphragm.

 


Do you need more help identifying a snake you saw in Africa?

 

If so, check out this field guide, which is full of great information!


Learn more about animals found in Guinea in these ID Guides:


Which of these snakes have you seen before in Guinea?

 

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