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Black Mamba Swims Across a River Only to Meet the Jaws of a Crocodile

Nile crocodile and black mamba.
Nile crocodile and black mamba. Image created by Animals Around the Globe using DALL-E

Giosue Spinosa captured a black mamba trying to cross a crocodile-infested river in the Kruger National Park.

Black Mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis)

Black mamba, Dendroaspis polylepis, is one of the most feared snakes.
Black mamba, Dendroaspis polylepis, is one of the most feared snakes. Image by via Depositphotos

The black mamba is one of Africa’s deadliest and most feared snakes. They are also the second fastest snake on the ground, reaching speeds of up to 19 km per hour. This snake is notoriously aggressive when threatened and can deliver multiple bites in rapid succession.


Chongqing crocodile crocodile pool center.
Chongqing crocodile crocodile pool center. Image by jingaiping via Depositphotos.

On this day, Giosue headed to the Shingwedzi River in Northern Kruger National Park, hoping to find some wildlife. She did not expect to see a Nile crocodile attack a black mamba. Nile crocodiles are extremely agile in water. They can reach speeds of up to 35 km per hour over short bursts, allowing them to ambush prey that comes too close to the water’s edge.

A Surpirse

Black mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis).
Black mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis). Image by REPTILES4ALL via Depositphotos

When Giosue lifted her binoculars she was surprised to see a black mamba moving along a patch of dry river sand, making its way to the water’s edge. The river was full of hippos and crocodiles. The hippos did not even notice the snake however, the crocodiles were immediately drawn to the movement of the snake.

Crocodile Infested River Crossing

Nile crocodile swollowing fish.
Nile crocodile swollowing fish. Image by JohanSwanepoel via Depositphotos

The snake glided across the surface of the water and managed to avoid being attacked by a crocodile. However, once it got to the other side, the clay and muddy area made it difficult for the snake to move away from harm’s way. One of the crocodiles realized that this was a good opportunity for a meal and made its way across to the snake.

The attack

YouTube video
“Black Mamba Tries to Escape Crocodile”, Source: “YouTube”, Uploaded: “Latest Sightings”

The crocodile went straight for the snake. Fortunately for the crocodile, the snake could not harm it with its venom. The crocodile’s skin was too thick for the snake’s fangs to penetrate. The crocodile, therefore, just grabbed the snake with one bite and swung it around to kill it.


This unique sighting of a crocodile eating a black mamba shows the unpredictability of nature. The black mamba thought it had gotten away with the river crossing, but the crocodile had other ideas. Nile crocodiles are effective predators even when up against one of the most feared snakes in the world.

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