Lamprophis inornatus (Olive house snake, Black house snake)

Nagslang, Olyfhuisslang [Afrikaans]

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Teleostomi (teleost fish) > Osteichthyes (bony fish) > Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) > Stegocephalia (terrestrial vertebrates) > Tetrapoda (four-legged vertebrates) > Reptiliomorpha > Amniota > Reptilia (reptiles) > Romeriida > Diapsida > Lepidosauromorpha > Lepidosauria > Squamata > Serpentes (snakes) > Family: Colubridae > Subfamily: Boodontinae > Genus: Lamprophis

Lamprophis inornatus (Olive house snake, Black house snake), KwaZulu-Natal. [J.P. Brouard ©, from SARCA Virtual Museum]

Lamprophis inornatus (Olive house snake, Black house snake), KwaZulu-Natal. [J.T. Fisher ©, from SARCA Virtual Museum]

Lamprophis inornatus (Olive house snake, Black house snake), Eastern Cape. [Q. Armstrong ©, from SARCA Virtual Museum]

Identification

The Olive hose snake is identified by its uniform olive or grey colouration, its small eyes and its strictly nocturnal lifestyle. It grows to an average length of 75 cm but may reach up to 1.3 meters in length.

Distribution and habitat

This hose snake species is found in the Western Cape and in a band between northern KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo. Its preferred habitat is moist savanna and lowland forest.

Food

Feeds on lizards, rodents (e.g. rats and mice) and other snakes.

Predators, parasites and disease

Eaten by other snakes and birds of prey (particularly secretary birds and snake eagles).

Reproduction

Oviparous (egg-laying), lays between 5 and 15 eggs in summer.

Longevity

Has been known to live for 20 years in captivity

Medical importance

Non-venomous and not dangerous to man.

Links

References

  • Broadley, D.G. 1983. FitzSimons' Snakes of Southern Africa. Delta Books, Johannesburg.

  • Marais, J. 2004. A Complete Guide to Snakes of Southern Africa. Struik Publishing, Cape Town.

 


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