Thailand Snakes – Can Anyone Put a Name To This One

Wonderful Wi and I arrived at our village home around midday yesterday and quickly set about unloading everything from our Honda rental car. The groceries were first, followed by one large suitcase, two travel bags and lastly two days worth of the kind of things you accumulate browsing shopping malls and night markets.

Twenty minutes later with everything put in its right place I wandered outside to sit at our garden table and smoke a cigarette. I lit the cigarette but didn’t make the seat because something caught my attention just as I was about to sit down. It made me take a step back and then curiosity took me an even greater step forward.

There was something lying in the middle of the table and at first I thought it was a rubber toy snake, but getting a little closer I became convinced it was in fact a real one. Albeit very small.

The ‘thing’ was only about 8-10 inches long and it was thinner than a standard size pencil. I picked up a long twig and with an outstretched arm gave it a gentle poke (imagine Indiana Jones in action). The ‘thing’ didn’t bat an eyelid.

My probing convinced me it was real but it appeared to be dead. I called Wilai’s teenage nephew over for a village boy’s expert opinion on the snake’s state of health.

To my surprise the youngster went about his task in exactly the same way as I had, he picked up a longish twig and prodded the ‘thing’. He then starting taking pictures with his mobile phone. That one action left me in no doubt that it was a dead snake and probably a very young one at that.

 I still don’t know what type of snake it was and if there are any Thailand snake experts among my readers then I’d like to put the following questions to you.

  • What type of snake is it?
  • Assuming it’s a baby snake, what length do they grow to?
  • Are they poisonous?

Despite my great fear of any snake, poisonous or not, what I saw is just a part of everyday village life but hopefully, out of interest, someone can answer my questions.


I'm a sixty-year-old Englishman living in the town of Swindon in rural Wiltshire and I have a real deep desire to retire in Thailand one day. If you don't have a dream then you won't have a dream come true.

10 Responses

  1. Kate@Blog for Ex Singaporeans says:

    Unfortunately, I’m not a snake expert, but I was really thrilled from you situation. I also found a dead snake in my house when I was little…. I can only advise you to do some snake’s blog research such as
    what did Wilai’s nephew say about this snake? waiting for your updates!
    Good luck!

  2. Catherine says:

    Martyn, you are not going to like this suggestion, but…

    Malayan Krait – or, Blue Krait – Venomous – Deadly

    One of the top 10 most toxic terrestrial venomous snakes in the world resides in Thailand, and is 2nd behind the Bungarus multicinctus in strength of venom, according to LD50 charts for subcutaneous venom injection (into mice), is the Malayan Krait, also called the Blue Krait.

    YouTube Video: Malayan Krait – Blue Krait – Deadly Venomous Thailand Snake

  3. Catherine says:

    Martyn, do you have a closeup of the head? I believe the shape of the head is used for identification. I’m not a snake person so I could be very wrong… but if it’s a baby snake and the patterns change… ok, I’m grasping at straws here and coming up empty.

  4. Vern says:

    Malayan Krait aka: Blue Krait, from what I can see… couldn’t get a good blowup of the pic. They are ranked in the top 10 deadly venomous snakes in the world (terrestrial snakes). Glad it wasn’t alive! Cheers…

  5. Mike says:

    Hi Martyn, it looks like a Malayan Krait(Blue Krait) which if it is, is both deadly and dangerous.
    However there are some look a like snakes that are similar and less dangerous, check out the link I sent you to see.
    I take it it didn’t go in the pot then 😉

  6. Martyn says:

    Thanks to everyone who responded to my plea. Your comments all seem to point to the snake being a Malayan Krait and so I’ll reply with one comment to you all.

    Wilai has since questioned her mother about the snake and it was her who killed it the day before we arrived at the village. She put it on the table and forgot about it. However she says this type of snake is harmless and not deadly at al,l and having followed your links and blown up my photo I think it is probably not a deadly Malayan Krait. The one in my photo has more wide kind of black patches whereas the Krait has black hoops. Hopefully I’m right.

    Thanks for taking the time to check it out for me, it’s further proof of what a great gang the Thai blog community are.

  7. Emm says:

    I’m not really scared of snakes but I’m really, really careful around them. They might not be poisonous but they all bite and they bites are flipping sore!! It’s the same with spiders. I learned the hard way, at a really young age, that just because it isn’t poisonous doesn’t mean you won’t have a massive allergic reaction to the bite!

  8. Martyn says:

    Emm I think with you being brought up in South Africa helps with you dealing with snakes. Being raised in the UK I probably takes tax and utility bill hikes etc. better than you do.Thanks for the read.

  9. The photo wasn’t good enough for me to have a great look. The “Laotian Wolf Snake” and the Bridle Snake are also similar to the Malayan Krait… as is the Multi-Banded Krait and Banded Krait. Lol. Many kraits in Thailand. Kraits are more plentiful in the northeast, and love rat holes near / in rice-fields. Kraits eat other snakes primarily – when they can find them, but, when hungry will eat just about anything else… lizards, frogs, and I think eggs.

    They are ground dwellers – keep your doors shut at night, and don’t sleep on the floor.


  10. Martyn says:

    Vern thanks for all your efforts, I appreciate it very much….apart from your last sentence….that’s scarey.

    Did you type it wearing a Hannibal Lecter face mask and snakeskin shoes.

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