Ahaetulla prasina

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Ahaetulla prasina
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Colubridae
Genus: Ahaetulla
A. prasina
Binomial name
Ahaetulla prasina
(Boie, 1827)[2]

Dryophis prasinus Boie, 1827

Ahaetulla prasina is a species of snake in the family Colubridae native to southern Asia. Its common names include Asian vine snake, Boie's whip snake, Gunther's whip snake, Oriental whip snake (Thai: งูเขียวหัวจิ้งจก) .[1]


Snake scale identification guide from Malcolm A. Smith (1943)

ag – Anterior genials or Chin shields
pg – Posterior Genials or Chin shields
t – Anterior and Posterior Temporals
v – First Ventral

The body form is extremely slender with a long, pointed, projecting snout which is rather more than twice as long as the eye. Adult colouration varies from light brown to dull yellow-green and often a startling fluorescent green.[3]

The type and number of scales is used to identify the snakes. In this species the Internasals are usually in contact with the labial or lip scales. There are one to four small loreals between the prefrontal and the labial scales. The frontal is as long as its distance from the end of the snout or a little longer and a little longer than the parietal scales. There is one preocular scale in front of the eye, which is in contact with the frontal scale. There two postocular scales (behind the eyes). The temporal scales come in patterns of 2+2 or 3+3, rarely 1+2. Of the upper labial scales, the ninth, fourth, fifth, and sixth enter the eye while the 4 lower labials are in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are shorter than the posterior chin-shields. The scales in 15 rows and are usually faintly keeled on the sacral region. There are 203-234 Ventral scales which are anal divided. There are 167 to 203 subcaudals which are bright green, pale olive, or grey-brown, with a yellow line along each side of the lower parts. The interstitial skin of the neck is black and white.[4]

Adults may attain 1.8 m (6 feet) in total length, with a tail 0.6 m (2 feet) long.[5]

Its appearance is very much like those of South American vine snakes. It is a rear-fanged species and is mildly venomous but is not considered a threat to humans.


This snake has a wide distribution in Asia, where it occurs in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.[1]


The Asian vine snake feeds on small reptiles and amphibians, particularly lizards and tree frogs.

In captivity[edit]

In recent years, it has entered the pet trade and has become quite popular among hobbyists.


Four subspecies are recognized, including the nominate race.



  1. ^ a b c Thy, N.; Nguyen, T.Q.; Golynsky, E.; Demegillo, A.; Diesmos, A.C. & Gonzalez, J.C. (2012). "Ahaetulla prasina". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2012: e.T176329A1439072. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2012-1.RLTS.T176329A1439072.en.
  2. ^ Dahms Tierleben. www.dahmstierleben.de
  3. ^ "Oriental Whip Snake". Ecology Asia.
  4. ^ Boulenger, G.A. 1890. Fauna of British India. Reptilia and Batrachia. British Museum. London. p. 369.
  5. ^ Boulenger, G.A. 1896. Catalogue of the Snakes in the British Museum (Natural History), Volume III. London.


  • Boulenger, G.A. 1897 List of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Mr. Alfred Everett in Lombok, Flores, Sumba and Saru, with descriptions of new species.Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (6) 19: 503-509
  • Shaw, G. 1802 General Zoology, or Systematic Natural History. Vol.3, part 1 + 2. G. Kearsley, Thomas Davison, London: 313-615

External links[edit]