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Top 5 Venomous Snakes in Australia

Australia has the most venomous snakes in the entire planet. We are the only country with more venomous snakes than non venomous snakes. Our snakes are so venomous, that Australia has had to establish world leading venom research and production facilities and also has established catchers in every major town and city to protect against snakes!

Just remember: assume any snake that you see in Australia to be venomous. Every single state and territory of Australia could have different species of venomous snakes, each of which has different patterns and colours. Do NOT take any risks. Call a snake catcher.

As a reference, listed below is a countdown to the top five most deadly snakes in Australia and where you're likely to encounter them.

#5. Death Adder

Ranked the 9th deadliest snake on the planet, these snakes are typically between 50 to 90cm long and often do not run away but lay in ambush, buried or hidden in leaves, shrubs
or in the ground. 

Despite remaining so still, death adders are ranked the fastest striking snake in the entire world. It is so fast that the strike can barely be seen with the naked eye.

Death adder venom contains a powerful neurotoxin affecting the brain and nervous system of any dog they bite. 

Symptoms of this bite often take longer to show than that of other snakes.

#4. Tiger Snake
(all varieties)

Ranked the 5th most venomous snake in the planet, there are different types of tiger snakes, all who can significantly vary in colour, patterns, stripes and size. 

Most tiger snakes caught in suburban areas are between 1 – 1.5 metres long but these snakes can easily grow over 2 metres.

The tiger snake venom contains:

  • Powerful neurotoxins
  • Haemolysins (destroy the cell membrane of red blood cells)
  • Myotoxins (cause severe muscle necrosis and paralysis including diaphragmatic paralysis which interferes with your ability to breathe).
Tiger snakes can be found at all times of the day and night and are particularly adapted to colder climates. When threatened, this snake will often flatten its neck and raise its head. 

One interesting fact about the tiger snake is that they climb very well. I have caught these snakes in trees, on fences and roofs.

#3. Coastal Taipan (Mainland Taipan)

The 3rd deadliest snake in the world is of course also from Australia. 
The Coastal Taipan is the longest species of venomous snake in Australia with an average size of 2-2.5 metres.

Before antivenom was created, barely anyone survived the bite of a coastal taipan. They have a reputation for being ‘aggressive’ however are a generally shy species

When threatened taipans will rapidly and repeatedly strike with each bite containing venom time and time again. They deliver large quantities of venom compared to other Australian snakes.

Because they are long snakes, they often strike higher than other snakes do. If you ever see your dog attempting to harass a coastal taipan, recall the dog immediately.

#2. Eastern Brown (Common Brown)

Eastern brown snakes are the 2nd most venomous snake in the entire planet. 
They can easily grow to around 2 metres, can vary between a light tan to an almost black colour and are extremely formidable to deal with.
Brown snakes are very fast moving, agile and can fit into and hide in the tightest and narrowest of spaces

When provoked, they will raise the front part of their body in an “S” shape, its mouth will gape open and be ready to strike forward. If you see this happening near your dog, immediately call your dog back as it is in imminent danger.

The venom contained in a brown snake bite contains powerful neurotoxins and blood coagulants. These snakes are responsible for more human deaths in Australia than any other snake. 
I cannot emphasise enough the danger a large (or small) eastern brown snake poses to your dog.

#1. Inland Taipan (Fierce Snake)

As you can see, the 9th , 5th , 3rd and 2nd most venomous snakes in the world are all from Australia. Without question, the most venomous snake in the world must be from our fair nation as well. 

The Inland Taipan is a long snake averaging 2 metres in length whose single bite is sufficient to kill 100 men (and many more dogs than that). 

You are unlikely to have one of these snakes bite your dog as they very shy and retreat at the sign of danger. Further, these are located in more central eastern rural parts of Australia (refer Map under #3).

Mark Pelley (The Snake Hunter) is based in Diamond Creek Victoria where he catches more venomous snakes in people’s homes, cars and backyards each year that you would dare to imagine. 

Trained in handling snakes in both Australia and Pakistan, he is well known for running towards a striking and threatening snake when others turn in the opposite direction! Mark also provides reptile shows for events, consultation for government and private businesses on how any situation that has to deal with snakes. He goes to schools and educates migrant communities to help people better understand how to respect and value Australia’s natural biodiversity. 

To learn more, please visit or follow @SnakeHunterAus on Facebook

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