The Asian vine snake, Oriental whip snake, Gunther’s whip snake, or Boie’s whip snake is endemic to southern Asia. The diurnal snake spends most of its life on trees. It moves so fast among the branches that it looks like it is floating on the tree crowns. It needs to chew on its prey to release its venom. Just biting is not enough.
This snake has four recognized subspecies.
- Ahaetulla prasina medioxima
- Ahaetulla prasina preocularis
- Ahaetulla prasina prasina
- Ahaetulla prasina suluensis
Adults can attain a total length of 6 ft (1.8 m), with the tail making up around 2 ft (0.6 m) of it.
Color and Appearance
This is a very slender snake with a long, pointed snout that is more than twice as long as the eye. The color of the adults ranges from light brown to dull yellow-green and is often a brilliant fluorescent green. It resembles South American vine snakes in its appearance.
Are They Dangerous to Humans
The snake is mildly venomous and not considered to be dangerous to humans. Its bite can cause localized pain, swelling, and allergic reactions. It is aggressive only while foraging and mild-tempered otherwise. If threatened, it takes an S-shaped position and puffs up its neck. It is also likely to bite at that time.
When kept as a pet it is quite docile and tolerates handling.
Asian Vine Snakes at a Glance
The colubrid occurs in India, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Burma, Brunei, China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Laos, Phillippines, Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam.
The Boie’s whip snake dwells in dry as well as moist forests. It also inhabits plantations, shrublands, pasturelands, rural gardens, and urban areas.
The Asian vine snake lives for around 12 years.
They are eaten by bigger snakes and birds of prey.
Small amphibians and reptiles, especially tree frogs and lizards, make up the diet of this ambush predator. It stuns or immobilizes its prey by injecting its venom and then consumes it. Being rear-fanged, it must chew on its food long enough to envenomate it.
Ovoviviparous (gives birth to live young from eggs that hatch inside the body)
The Gunther’s whip snake typically gives birth to 10 young at a time of up to 9.5 inches (24 cm) size.
Size of the Enclosure: 36 inches (length) x 18 inches (width) x 36 inches (height) is the suitable enclosure size for the Asian vine snake. It should have branches and hides.
Temperature: The pet setup should have a hot spot maintained at 95-100°F at its top. The temperature should lower towards the bottom, kept at around 80°F. It can drop by 10-15°F at night.
Humidity: This snake requires high humidity levels of 75%-90% in its tank. A large water bowl should be provided for the snake to soak in and drink from.
Substrate: A few inches of cypress mulch covered by an inch of sphagnum moss is good as it maintains the required humidity level without being too wet.
Feeding: Rodents and green anoles can be provided as food.
Source: ultimateexotics.co.za, reddit.com, inaturalist.ca, indiabiodiversity.org, content.invisioncic.com, scontent.fccu25-1.fna.fbcdn.net