Black-bellied Swamp Snake

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John Dengate picked up a black-bellied swamp snake. These snakes are not highly venomous, but they do bite and victims may suffer pain and localised swelling. John pointed out that this species could easily be confused with the eastern brown snake, which looks similar but is much more dangerous. If you see a snake, it’s best to leave it alone.

Black-bellied Swamp Snake (Hemiaspis signata)

The black-bellied swamp snake, or marsh snake, likes moist areas including creek banks, wet forests and well-watered gardens. They can reach about 1m long. They vary in colour from pale olive to black, with a grey to black underside. They also have two very distinctive white lines on the face. Young snakes are brightly coloured with dark heads, and measure around 10cm.

Black-bellied swamp snakes are found along the east coast of New South Wales and Queensland. Their diet consists mainly of frogs and skinks.