8 Most Dangerous Snakes in the World

There’s a reason why snakes freak out so many people around the world. That’s because many of these legless creatures can inflict serious damage.

There are over 3,500 snake species in the world and over 600 are venomous. Several species are also able to strangle their victims. These snakes are referred to as “constricting snakes.”

Millions of people are bitten by snakes every year of which an unhealthy percentage ends up with deadly consequences. Luckily, snakebites can be cured with powerful antivenom.

Below you’ll find a list of some of the most dangerous snakes in the world, creatures that you want to leave alone at all costs.

1. Coastal Taipan

The Coastal Taipan (Oxyuranus scutellatus) is the third-most venomous land snake in the world. It’s a member of the family Elapidae and occurs in both northern and eastern Australia and the island of New Guinea.

With a length of up to 2 meters (6.6 feet), it’s extremely long as well. Although the Inland Taipan (Oxyuranus microlepidotus) is even more venomous, the coastal taipan lives in areas where humans live as well. They can be found in forests and open woodlands where it hunts small animals

Most dangerous snakes in the world Coastal Taipan
The Coastal Taipan / John Wombey, CSIRO / Wiki Commons

2. Tiger Snake

The Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) is another dangerous animal in Australia. It can be found in the southern part of the country as well as the nearby islands including Tasmania. They are named because of the black and yellow color scheme of their skin which resembles that of a tiger.

These creatures are extremely versatile because they are able to swim and climb in trees and buildings. They are members of the family Elapidae and reach a length of approximately 1.2 meters (3 feet 11 inches). Their venom contains a lot of potent neurotoxins which are often deadly when left untreated.

Tiger Snake
Tiger Snake / Catching the Eye / Wiki Commons

3. Black Mamba

The Black Mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis) is a highly venomous snake and a member of the family Elapidae that occurs in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa. With an average length of around 3 meters (9 feet 10 inches), it’s the second-longest venomous snake after the King Cobra.

This snake can occur in various habitats, including savannahs, woodlands, dense forests, and rocky areas. That’s because they are both ground-dwelling and arboreal. Thye prey on birds and small mammals and can move with a speed of up to 16 kilometers per hour (10 miles per hour) during an attack.

Black Mamba detail
Black Mamba / Herman Pijpers / Wiki Commons

4. Indian Cobra

The Indian cobra (Naja naja) is also known as the spectacled Cobra and the Asian Cobra. That’s mainly because it doesn’t occur solely in India but it also lives in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bhutan. If you ever see a snake charmer, chances are high he is using an Indian Cobra. It’s another type of snake that can occur in various different habitats.

The venom of these snakes isn’t the most potent, but it’s extremely fast-working. It’s hard to judge how dangerous bites of these snakes really are because it depends on a case-by-case basis. What’s certain is that Indian Cobras are responsible for most snakebite cases in India.

Indian Cobra
Indian Cobra / Raju Kasambe / Wiki Commons

5. Common Krait

The Common Krait (Bungarus caeruleus) is also known as the Bengali Krait and it’s another snake species that is native to the Indian subcontinent. This snake is considered to be even more dangerous than the Indian Cobra because its venom consists of more powerful neurotoxins which are able to paralyze people when left untreated.

Although the average length of this snake is only about 0.9 meters (2 feet 11 inches), some individual snakes can grow up to 1.75 meters (5 feet 9 inches) in length. What’s remarkable about this snake species is that it solely hunts other smaller snakes. If it can’t find other snakes, it cannibalizes other kraits.

Common Krait
Common Krait / Raju Kidoor / Wiki Commons

6. Russell’s Viper

Russell’s Viper (Daboia russelii) is another snake that occurs on the Indian subcontinent and the surrounding areas. It was named after Scottish naturalist Patrick Russell who was the first to write about it in his work “An account of Indian serpents, collected on the coast of Coromandel” (1796).

This snake species is known to have a very short temper which makes it very dangerous as it’s quick to attack. This combination with the fact that its bite is extremely painful makes it one of the dangerous snakes in the world you want to avoid at all costs. This edgy snake causes the most casualties of any snake in India every year.

Russel's Viper
Russel’s Viper / Dfpindia / Wiki Commons

7. Saw-scaled Viper

The saw-Scaled Viper (Echis carinatus) is the final of the 4 snake species that are referred to as “the big four snakes in India.” This is not an honorable title because it refers to the 4 snakes that cause most snakebit cases in the country. It’s yet another aggressive snake that is easily provoked by sudden movements.

Don’t let the small size of this snake fool you. Although it only has an average length of between 38 and 80 centimeters (15 and 31 inches), it’s one of the fastest-striking snakes in the world. This in combination with the extremely powerful venom it releases makes it one of the most dangerous snakes in the world.

Saw-Scaled Viper
Saw-Scaled Viper / Shantanu Kaveskar / Wiki Commons

8. Eastern Brown Snake

The Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textiles) is considered to be the second-most venomous snake in the world after the Inland Taipan. It”s native to eastern and central Australia and the southern part of New Guinea. Its danger is reflected in the fact that it causes 60% of all snakebite-related deaths in Australia.

Because powerful antivenom is easily available, the number of deaths in Australia is extremely low. You still want to avoid this aggressive snake because of its potent venom. It’s a fairly long snake with an average length of about 2 meters (7 feet) in length. It has a slender body and can move fairly quickly as well.

Eastern brown snake eating a lizard
An Eastern brown snake eating a lizard / Matt / Wiki Commons