Langaha madagascariensis

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Langaha madagascariensis
Female Langaha madagascariensis.jpg
Female L. madagascariensis
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Lamprophiidae
Genus: Langaha
Species: L. madagascariensis
Binomial name
Langaha madagascariensis
  • Langaha nasuta Shaw, 1802
  • Langaha crista-galli Duméril & Bibron 1854
  • Langaha ensifera Duméril & Bibron 1854
  • Langaha intermedia Boulenger 1888[2]
Langaha madagascariensis 001.jpg

Langaha madagascariensis (formerly Langaha nasuta, commonly known as the Madagascar or Malagasy leaf-nosed snake) is a medium-sized highly cryptic arboreal species. It is endemic to Madagascar and found in deciduous dry forests and rain forests, often in vegetation 1.5 to 2 meters above the ground.[1][3]


Malagasy leaf-nosed snakes can grow up to 1 meter in length.[3] There is considerable sexual dimorphism within the species; the males are dorsally brown and ventrally yellow with a long tapering snout, while the females are mottled grey with a flattened, leaf shaped snout.[4] The function of their appendage is unknown, but obviously also serves as camouflage.[3]

It is largely a sit-and-wait predator. It may show curious resting behaviour, hanging straight down from a branch. Prey items include arboreal and terrestrial lizards.[5]

Leaf-nosed snakes are oviparous with clutch sizes ranging from 5 to 11 eggs.[3]

Malagasy leaf-nosed snakes are generally calm and reluctant to bite unless provoked. Envenomation by the snake causes severe pain in humans, but is not deadly.[6]


  1. ^ a b Raxworthy, C.J. (2011). "Leaf Nosed Snake". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
  2. ^ The Reptile Database.
  3. ^ a b c d Glaw, Frank; Vences, Miguel (2007). A Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar (3rd ed.). Köln: M. Vences & F. Glaw Verlags GbR. ISBN 978-3-929449-03-7.
  4. ^ Andrew Durso (February 7, 2013). "Malagasy Leaf-nosed Snakes". Life is Short, but Snakes are Long. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
  5. ^ Tingle, Jessica L. (2012). "Field Observations on the behavioral ecology of the Madagascan leaf-nosed snake, Langaha madagascariensis" (PDF). Herpetological Conservation and Biology. 7 (3): 442–448.
  6. ^ D'Cruze, Neil C. (2008). "Envenomation by the Malagasy colubrid snake Langaha madagascariensis". Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins including Tropical Diseases. 14 (3): 546–551. doi:10.1590/S1678-91992008000300014.

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