Living as an expat in Australia means that you’re probably used to the wide range of wildlife that roams the country, from spiders to kangaroos it’s a fact of life down under that you will come into contact with animals. One creature however is often given a wide berth and that is the snake. As spring begins in Australia snakes will be stirring and will be on the move. Fortunately snake bites are rare and fatalities even more so thanks to the creation of anti-venom. We take a look at the snakes you need to avoid and what to do if bitten.
The ten deadliest snakes
10. Red-bellied black snake – This snake may not be the most venomous but it’s one that you’re most likely to come across as it often lives in the more populated regions of Australia. This snake is one of the few venomous snakes still living in the Sydney region. Fortunately it’s not a very aggressive snake but a bite is certainly not fun. If bitten seek medical attention immediately, its venom is rarely deadly but it sure packs a punch as it causes nerve and muscle damage.
9. Common death adder
This snake is commonly found in Eastern Australia’s bush regions and is a particular nuisance to unwary walkers as it tends to sit still and concealed under leaves or sand. Fortunately there is anti-venom for its bite but we wouldn’t recommend you step on one.
8. Small-eyed snake
This small snake is again often found on the East coast of the country. They tend to come out at night and due to their size rarely come into contact with humans, they are common however and can give deliver a nasty bite.
This snake tends to live alongside waterways and tends to venture out in weather normally considered too cold for snakes. These snakes are shy and contact with humans is rare. They do tend to live in settled areas but their bite is rarely fatal.
6. Mulga snake
This beast of a snake is the heaviest venomous snake in Australia and delivers a world record breaking amount of venom when it bites. The northern variant of these snakes are often a lot more aggressive than those found in the south and deliver a savage bite if disturbed. If you see one avoid at all costs, if bitten medical assistance should be sought immediately.
5. Coastal Taipan
These deadly snakes are often found in sugarcane fields and predominately live on the eastern coast of the country. They are the third most venomous snake in the world and are particularly aggressive. In severe cases death can occur within 30 minutes of being bitten.
4. Inland Taipan
This snake lives in the dryer parts of the country, predominately the northern territory and southern Australia. Luckily these snakes are relatively rare as they choose to hide out in cracks and rocky areas. Its venom is the most potent in the world and can kill an adult human in under an hour.
3. Mainland Tiger snake
This snake is responsible for the second-highest number of bites in Australia as they tend to live in the populated areas on the east coast; Melbourne in particular seems to be a favourite location. With its distinctive striped bodies which vary in colour from black to pale yellow these snakes are certainly ones to be avoided.
2. Western Brown Snake
These fast moving snakes tend to have a nervous disposition which causes them to attack if disturbed. They are widespread across the country but are rare in the south east and western regions of the country. Their bites are painless but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek treatment, these snakes kill more people than any other.
1. Eastern Brown Snake
The more aggressive relation of the western brown these snakes are quick and responsible for more deaths in Australia than any other snake. If disturbed the snake raises its body off the ground, winding into an S shape, mouth wide open and poised to strike. After being bitten victims will collapse from paralysis within minutes. A bite from this snake requires many doses of anti-venom to heal.
As spring heats up snakes will be more active, the best way to avoid snakes is to be aware of your surroundings. If you see a snake, avoid it, if ones got into your home do not attempt to remove it yourself, instead contact specialists to get rid of them for you.