Dragon Snakes: Diet, appearance, habitat, lifespan, etc.


A dragon snake is a distinctive species of snake that is highly uncommon to find in captivity. Johannes T. Reinhardt, a Danish biologist, initially described the species in 1836. The snake has a distinctive look and has several peculiar actions. For instance, a dragon snake tightens its entire body when you try to pick it up. The dragon snake may be found in woods, marshes, swamps, rice fields, and other places where there is water or streams. These snakes are semi-fossorial and spend most of their life underground. They are active at night when foraging for prey.

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A little about dragon snakes

The dragon snake is a species that grows to a relatively small size, with a maximum length of around 3 feet, and is even smaller than python snakes. They often have white bellies and are gray, and have long tails and lean bodies. These snakes have huge black eyes and unique heads. The scales on these snakes’ backs make them stand out the most. Their back is covered in three rows of thick, keeled scales. It resembles the conventional representation of a dragon’s back, therefore, the creature’s name. Although some have lived as long as ten years, the average lifetime is seven years or more.


History and taxonomy

Even though the dragon snake was initially introduced to science in 1836, experts have yet to learn about this species. Xenodermus javanicus is the official and scientific name for the dragon snake. Greek words that mean “Strange Skin” are the origin of Xenodermus. The Xenodermus genus is where the dragon snake lives, as its name shows. This genus is monotypic, meaning there are just one species. This species of snake is a member of the Xenodermidae family. Five genera make up this family of snakes. Each of these snakes is rarely kept as a pet. The Borneo Red Snake and odd-scaled snakes are two species that make up this family.

Diet and feeding of this snake

Because they only desire frogs as food, dragon snakes are the simplest to feed. These snakes seek and consume frogs in their natural habitat, particularly at night. Because it hunts and kills its prey at night, this animal is nocturnal. There are rumors that it consumes tiny fish as well. The dragon snake kills its victim with its teeth before swallowing it whole, unlike more enormous snakes that wrap around their victim to do so. A snake like a dragon snake might take many hours to finish its victim. It will stay still on the earth while attempting to consume its victim entirely.

Homage and distribution

Asia’s southeast is home to the dragon snake. Their home range spans from southern Myanmar to Sumatra, Java, and the Borneo Islands. Countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia are home to the. The distribution of these snakes still needs to be understood. A single specimen discovered in each nation in the middle of the 20th century serves as the basis for their existence in Myanmar and Thailand. Such snakes prefer to live at higher altitudes, between 500 and 1,000 meters. However, they have also been discovered at greater altitudes and near the sea.

The Reproduction


Dragon snakes lay eggs at night and hatch after three weeks. Females can lay between 4 and 12 eggs a year, depending on how much food they consume. Only once every few months, a female dragon snake will mate. She lays her egg in a divot or hole in the earth, then covers it with soil. After depositing the egg, she departs from the nest, and after about 30 days, the baby hatchlings are visible above ground.

Dragon snake life span

In comparison to other snake species, the dragon snake, sometimes called the Asian pipe snake, has a comparatively lengthy lifetime. Its natural habitat is Southeast Asia, and it has a lifetime of 10 years roughly in wild. Researchers and reptile lovers alike are fascinated by this non-venomous, thin reptile because of its distinctive traits and environmental adaptations.

Do dragon snakes make good pets?

The dragon snake is not a suitable pet. Despite their striking and distinctive appearance, it is challenging to maintain the health of these snakes in captivity. Few humans have successfully kept and reproduced them in captivity. There is still much to learn about the care requirements for these snakes, and it is inevitable that much of what we now think is true will alter as we learn more about these fantastic animals. If you have limited expertise in maintaining snakes with specific care needs, think of something other than keeping this species. We advise conducting as much preparation work as possible if you intend to keep one of these snakes.

Is it easy to take care of these snakes?

A dragon snake often thrives in a smaller enclosure. A 2-foot by 1-foot by 1-foot enclosure works well for many keepers to house adults. You can go more extensive, but they can quickly get agitated in big cages. We can keep a child in a tiny plastic storage container. Your snake will feel safe in these cages since they do a great job of retaining humidity. Juveniles should be housed separately whenever possible. The Dragon Snake does not need to be maintained at overly high temperatures because it is native to the higher altitude areas of Southeast Asia. In actuality, these snakes cannot endure extreme heat for long periods.

There shouldn’t be any lights in a cage for a dragon snake. Since they tend to favor darker environments, these snakes are sensitive to light. During the day, you should strive for a dimly lit space and darkness at night.

Is it easy to handle dragon snakes?

If you want a snake, you can take it outside and handle it all the time. A dragon snake is not a species you should consider. This snake is easily stressed and frequently stops eating after being handled too much. Due to its highly unique care needs, challenging food, and reclusive disposition, this species is best kept in the care of skilled keepers. Despite being beautiful, they are not even suitable as exhibition animals because they spend much of the day hiding.


Is there a connection between snakes and dragons?

The term ‘dragon’ in English originates from the Greek word ‘drakōn,’ which initially referred to any large serpent. Throughout mythology, regardless of the form it took on later, the dragon remained fundamentally associated with a snake.

What is the average size of a dragon snake?

Naturally, this snake is unique in appearance, but an adult dragon snake is not significant. The maximum length noted for this snake is 5 feet, and an average snake is not more than 35 inches.

Is a dragon snake rare species?

Yes, it is a rare snake because it lives in the wild mostly and never comes in front of an ordinary pet. Dragon snakes prefer to live at a distance from humans and escape the whole day from them.

Is a dragon snake a poisonous animal?

No, contrary to their strange appearance, these snakes are non-venomous. Dragon snakes usually stiffen their body if a threat is nearby and do not bite.

Is a dragon snake aggressive?

No, naturally, a dragon snake is shy and does not harm humans. But their strange looks make people afraid of it since the reality is the opposite.

Can dragon snakes swim?

Snakes do not have arms and feet like other reptiles. But yes, they are great swimmers and prefer to live well. They can get to the other corner of the well quickly and prefer to eat frogs that live there.


Despite their strange and unique looks, dragon snakes are not dangerous. But their looks are enough to make people afraid of them. These snakes are non-aggressive and have never been seen biting a human being. They do not get along well with humans, which is why their rarity in human-populated areas. Dragon snakes prefer to live in areas with good heights and come out at night to find their meal. Though complete data about this snake is unavailable, our suggestion is not to pet it because it requires extreme care.

Luke Julian
Luke Julian is a herpetologist with a fascination for snakes spanning over 15 years. His in-depth knowledge and passion for these remarkable reptiles fuel his writing, offering readers engaging insights into the world of serpents.