The King Cobra is not the most venomous snake in the world, but it is in fact among their numbers and the amount of venom that it injects in a single bite is enough to kill about twenty five people, or to drop an elephant.
It seems extremely unfair then, that this most poisonous snake is also among the most menacing, and can stand up using its powerful muscles, and look a full grown man in the eye as it does. The King Cobra is one of the most beautiful, and the most deadly of snakes.
The King Cobra
The King Cobra can reach lengths of up to 18 feet long, making them the longest, if not the largest of all poisonous snakes.
When they are confronted or threatened they can raise over a third of their bodies upward, flare out the hoods that make them famous and still slither forward to attack their opponent. The sound they make, a hiss, can chill even the bravest person to the bone, sounding as it does, like the low growl of a dog.
King Cobras are shy, and avoid humans where they can, however if they are unable to avoid you, they are one of the most aggressive snakes alive when they feel cornered.
The habitat of the king cobra varies greatly, but they living mainly in rain forest areas. They can range from the plains and forests of India, China, Asia, and with each region they select their colors will vary widely so they are not always recognizable as what they are until they “rear their heads” as it were.
Cobras are at ease in the trees, on land, swimming in water and will feed primarily on other smaller snakes, although they will also take lizards, many kinds of eggs as well as smaller mammals as a meal.
Cobras have one other distinction as well. They are the only snake in the entire world that will build a nest for their young, and, much like a bird, will guard that nest completely, killing or attacking anything that comes near it until their hatching’s leave the eggs. Once the twenty or so hatching’s leave the egg they are on their own, born with enough venom to attack and kill their own prey.
King cobras are also famous for another thing that is often legendary, but more often than not, the legends are untrue.. They are known as being used by the snake charmers of South Asia.
Although cobras can hear, they are actually deaf to ambient noises, sensing ground vibrations instead. The charmer’s flute transfixed and entices the cobra by its shape and movement, not by the music , as many suppose it does.
Snake charmers, not surprisingly, do tend to have a higher level of cobra bites.