Short-nosed Vine Snake ( Ahaetulla prasina Boie, 1827 )

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Name
Scientific Name: 
Ahaetulla prasina (Boie, 1827)
Regional Names: 
English: 
Oriental Whip Snake, Asian Vine Snake, Boie's Whip Snake
Photographs: 
Distribution: 
Found in whole of North-east region from northern parts of West Bengal to all eastwards states.
Venom Type: 
Neurotoxic
Family: 
Characteristics for identification: 

Can be identified easily by checking 1) long & thin snout 2) horizontal pupil in eyes and 3) long & very thin body of green or yellow-brown color. Snout of this snake is significantly shorter than its closest species Green Vine Snake (Ahaetulla nasuta) It can be identified easily by checking 1) long & pointed snout 2) horizontal pupil in eyes and 3) long & very thin body of green or yellow-brown color. Snout of this snake is significantly shorter than its closest species Green Vine Snake (Ahaetulla nasuta) and lacks any dermal appendage on tip.and lacks any dermal appendage on tip.

Description: 

Average length- 150cm.
Maximum length- 197cm.

Dorsal -
Thin, long and slender body. Scales smooth, long and obliquely arranged. Dorsal color parrot green, yellow, pale brown or grayish. Regular black and white interscale patterns present in oblique manner from neck to much of mid body. May times these black interscale regions join to give appearance of thin longitudinal lines on forebody.

Ventral -
Belly lighter than dorsal with yellow or white line separating two lines. Subcaudal scales paired in a zigzag manner.

Head -
Head long, clearly broader than neck with snout tapers to a point. Oval shape eyes have horizontal pupils.

Tail -
Very long, thin and slender tail ends with pointed tip.

Scalation
Head: 
Supralabial 9; 4th to 6th in contact with eyes, not divided horizontally; loreal 2 or 3; preocular 1, in contact with frontal; postocular 2; temporal 2+2 or 2+3.
Dorsal: 
Smooth scales in 15: 15: 13 in oblique rows.
Ventral: 
194-235; anal divided (rarely undivided).
Sub Caudal: 
157-192 (Male), 141-172 (Female); paired.
Habitat: 
Lives in variety of forests including mixed, dry and moist deciduous forests. Found in moderate hills and plains. Hides in dense green vegetation of low height. For foraging it choose dense bushes and plantation to stay at a place without showing any movement.
Natural History: 
Short-nosed Vine Snake is a diurnal and arboreal species which shows activity throughout the day at low to moderate heights. Sometimes seen on ground also. Locomotion fast in arboreal environment while much slower on ground. At heights it stays at a place for long time without showing any movement. Behavior shy and usually non-offensive. On threatening it throws half of fore body into loops or curves and put its whitish tongue out for long time but unlike Green Vine Snake it does not inflates itself. Can bite in chew manner on rough treatment. Female bears 4-10 young during summer and give birth in monsoon months.
Diet: 
Feeds on variety of prey including lizards, birds, frogs, other snakes, rodents etc.
Threats: 
Threats includes killing due to confusion and misidentification with venomous species and usually due to myths. More threats are loss of dense vegetation, low height plantation, road kills etc.
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