Skip to Content

What you Need To Know About Tiger Snake Bites

Tiger snake
A Tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) at Lake Walyungup, Western Australia. I got within 2 metres of the snake before noticing it but it did not move, happy to pose for a few. Image via Calistemon, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Are you ready to embark on a thrilling journey through the secretive realm of tiger snakes? 

Attention, thrill-seekers, and nature enthusiasts! 

Prepare yourselves for a wild ride into the treacherous world of tiger snake bites. 

You heard it right—venomous vortex and slithering excitement await you! If you’re a fan of heart-pounding encounters with deadly reptiles and enjoy testing the limits of your curiosity, then hold on tight! 

Tiger Snakes

Tiger Snake. Image: Pixabay.

We’re about to uncover the gripping tale of the tiger snake bite—nature’s version of a rollercoaster ride with a venomous twist.

Now, you might be wondering, “Why in the world would anyone willingly want to know more about a venomous snake bite?” 

Well, daring friends, it’s precisely because these scaly creatures possess the power to captivate and instill awe. There’s a certain allure in understanding the venomous arsenal that nature has bestowed upon these slithering beasts.

But don’t worry, we won’t be diving headfirst into a pit of fangs just yet! 

We’ll take a step back and approach this thrilling topic with a dash of humor and a pinch of wit. 

After all, who says learning about venomous snake bites can’t be entertaining?

So, buckle up, keep your antidote handy (just kidding, you won’t need it…probably), and let’s embark on this wild ride together as we explore the curious world of tiger snake bites.

Warning: This article may cause an increase in heart rate, sweaty palms, and an overwhelming desire to shout, “I want to know more!” 

Side effects may also include an insatiable thirst for adventure, an appreciation for nature’s wonders, and a newfound respect for snakes who can really pack a punch. Proceed at your own risk, brave souls!

Let the captivating journey begin!

Slither to any section below!

Tiger Snake Description – Habitat, Size, And Weight

Tiger Snake Head. Image: Pixabay.

The magnificent tiger snake! A creature so stylish, it could give even the most fashionable celebrities a run for their money. 

Let’s dive into the fascinating world of these slithering trendsetters and unravel their secrets.

Check out: Copperhead vs. Sonoran coral snake.

Identification: A Snake of Many Colors

Let’s kick off with Tiger snake size, shall we?

They typically range in size from around 1 meter to 1.5 meters in length, with some individuals reaching even larger sizes. 

These snakes have relatively thick bodies, contributing to their intimidating appearance. While their length can vary, it’s worth noting that size can also differ between males and females, with males tending to be slightly smaller than females

So, if you come across a tiger snake in the wild, don’t be surprised if you encounter a formidable creature measuring up to 1.5 meters in length, showcasing its impressive physical presence.

Do you know that tiger snakes come in a wide range of sizes and colors

Previously, there were two commonly acknowledged species: the Eastern Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) and the Black Tiger Snake (Notechis ater).

However, recent molecular studies have revealed that they are genetically similar. Therefore, it is now believed that there is only one species, Notechis scutatus, with significant variations in size and coloration.

The most commonly observed form of the tiger snake is dark olive brown to blackish-brown, adorned with off-white to yellowish cross-bands of varying thickness. 

However, some individuals can be entirely patternless, ranging from yellowish-brown to black. 

Interestingly, certain populations have almost entirely unbanded individuals

The adaptability of tiger snakes is truly remarkable, as they can even develop dark melanistic coloration to absorb heat more efficiently in challenging environments.

Check out: Lost Cat’s Remarkable Cross-Country Journey Home.

Subspecies: A Closer Look at Tiger Snake Varieties

Step into the fascinating world of tiger snakes, where variety is the spice of snake life! 

Despite recent genetic discoveries, the old classification of tiger snakes still holds some sway, recognizing several subcategories within this slithery species. 

So, let’s dive in and meet these unique subspecies, each with its own claim to fame:

Krefft’s Tiger Snake (Notechis ater ater)

Hailing from the picturesque Flinders Ranges in South Australia, Krefft’s Tiger Snake is the embodiment of elegance. With its distinctive cross-bands and a touch of flair, this subspecies knows how to make a statement. It’s like the haute couture of the tiger snake world, darling.

Tasmanian Tiger Snake (Notechis ater humphreysi)

Tasmanian Tiger Snake
Tasmanian Tiger Snake. Image. Depositphotos.

Tasmania brings us a twist on the tiger snake trend with its very own subspecies. The Tasmanian Tiger Snake boasts a unique charm found exclusively on King Island and in Tasmania. 

Its island-exclusive style has locals and visitors buzzing with excitement. Who knew tiger snakes had such regional fashion sensibilities?

Check out: A Silent Struggle: Owls take advantage of Unaware Rats.

Peninsular Tiger Snake (Notechis ater niger)

Peninsular Tiger Snake
Peninsular Tiger Snake from Kangaroo Island Australia. Image: Shutterstock.

Lower Eyre and Yorke Peninsulas, along with the offshore islands of South Australia, are home to the captivating Peninsular Tiger Snake. 

This subspecies showcases a distinct flair, standing out from the mainland crowd. It’s like the fashion-forward rebel of the tiger snake family—edgy and unapologetically cool.

Chappell Island Tiger Snake (Notechis ater serventyi)

Prepare to be whisked away to the enchanting Furneaux Group in Bass Strait, where the Chappell Island Tiger Snake reigns supreme. 

With its unique island charm and an air of mystery, this subspecies adds a touch of intrigue to the tiger snake world. It’s like the elusive supermodel of the snake fashion scene, always leaving us wanting more.

Western Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus occidentalis)

Sneaking into the southwest corner of Western Australia, the Western Tiger Snake knows how to command attention. 

Its distinct presence and style make it stand out among its counterparts. It’s like the fashionista of the wild west, effortlessly combining sophistication and a hint of danger.

Check out: The World’s Largest Species of Hummingbirds.

Eastern Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus scutatus)

Last but certainly not least, we have the Eastern Tiger Snake, representing the southeastern mainland of Australia. 

This subspecies is the epitome of classic elegance, with its dark olive brown to blackish-brown hues and off-white to yellowish cross-bands. It’s the Audrey Hepburn of the tiger snake world—timeless, refined, and always in vogue.

So, there you have it—the dazzling lineup of tiger snake subspecies. Each one brings its own unique style and charm to the runway of snake fashion. 

Whether it’s the bold patterns of Krefft’s Tiger Snake or the island-exclusive allure of the Tasmanian Tiger Snake, these subspecies prove that even in the wild, fashion knows no bounds.


When tiger snakes aren’t busy gracing the pages of Snake Vogue, they like to hang out in watery environments like creeks, dams, and wetlands. 

They’re all about that aquatic life!

 But don’t be fooled—they’re not afraid to slither into highly degraded areas like grazing lands, as long as there’s water and some local cover to keep their style intact.

And here’s a fun fact: Tiger snakes are excellent climbers! 

They can scale both vegetation and human constructions, reaching heights of up to 10 meters. It’s like their very own high-fashion runway, where they can show off their venomous prowess. 

Move over, supermodels—here come the slithering sensations!

Did you also know these slithering predators can stay submerged for an incredible nine minutes without resurfacing for a breath?

Now you do!

Similar Species: When Snakes Play Fashion Copycats

In the wild world of snake fashion, there are a few sneaky imitators who try to steal the spotlight from our beloved tiger snakes. 

Let’s meet these cunning copycats who are just dying to be mistaken for the real trendsetters.

Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis)

Watch out, tiger snakes, there’s a fashion fraud in town! The Eastern Brown Snake, with its banded form, can sometimes make you do a double take. 

But don’t be fooled by its attempt to rock the tiger snake’s signature look. It’s like a high-stakes game of “Who Wore It Better?” in the reptile fashion world.

Rough-scaled Snake (Tropidechis carinata)

Ah, the ambitious understudy of the tiger snake fashion show. Juvenile tiger snakes and the Rough-scaled Snake share a resemblance that can lead to a case of mistaken identity. 

But let’s be honest, darling, there’s only one true star of the show, and it’s not the understudy!

Stephen’s Banded Snake (Hoplocephalus stephensii)


Here comes another snake trying to ride the coattails of tiger snake fame. The Stephen’s Banded Snake can make you think you’ve spotted a mini version of our fashion-forward icon. 

But don’t be fooled—this is just an attempt at snakey impersonation. The original tiger snake knows how to work its scales like no other!

Copperheads (Austrelaps spp.)

Oh, Copperheads, always trying to blend in with the fashion elite. These venomous snakes might resemble patternless tiger snakes, but let’s not be fooled by their cunning tactics. They can’t quite capture the true essence of our stylish trendsetters.

Black Snakes (Pseudechis spp.)

Look who’s trying to slither their way into the tiger snake’s limelight! Black Snakes might resemble patternless tiger snakes, but their attempt to steal the show falls short. There’s only one snake that truly knows how to rock the monochrome look with finesse.

Red-bellied Black Snakes (Pseudechis porphyriacus)

Hold your gasps, ladies, and gentlemen! 

There have been instances where some tiger snake look-alikes have been spotted on Kangaroo Island. 

These rebels with a reddish belly have been mistaken for Red-bellied Black Snakes. Oh, the scandal! 

But let’s not be fooled by their attempt at deception. True tiger snakes know that black is the new black, and they wear it with fierce confidence.

So, dear friends, be cautious and keep your fashion radar on high alert. These copycats may try to imitate our stylish tiger snakes, but they can never truly match their venomous charm. 

Remember, when it comes to snake fashion, always trust the original trendsetter—the one and only tiger snake!


tiger snake
sleeping tiger snake Notechis scutatus. Image: Shutterstock.

Snakes have their seasons too, you know! Tiger snakes love the warmer months when they can show off their slithering skills in style. 

But here’s a surprise—these fashion-forward reptiles also enjoy basking on warm winter days. Winter fashion never looked so venomous!

When the cool breeze starts to roll in, tiger snakes prefer cozy hideouts. They aestivate in animal burrows, under large boulders, and even in standing dead trees. 

Talk about being fashionably adaptable! 

Who needs a walk-in closet when you have a 1.2-meter underground sanctuary?

So there you have it, folks—a glimpse into the glamorous and perilous world of tiger snakes. From their trendy patterns to their ability to slay any runway, these fashionable reptiles are the true trendsetters of the snake kingdom. 

Remember, when it comes to tiger snakes, fashion and venom go hand in hand.

YouTube video


Feeding and Diet: Satisfying Tiger Snake Appetites

When it comes to satisfying their hunger, tiger snakes have a menu that would make any adventurous eater green with envy. These cunning reptiles have a varied diet that includes:

Amphibians: Tiger snakes have a particular fondness for frogs. They enjoy hopping onto these slimy delicacies whenever the opportunity presents itself.

Fish: Like skilled anglers, tiger snakes have no problem slithering into watery realms to feast on fish. They can swim with the best of them, using their stealthy approach to surprise their aquatic prey.

Reptiles: Snakes have no qualms about dining on their reptilian relatives. Lizards and even smaller snakes can become delectable treats for a hungry tiger snake.

Birds: When they’re feeling a bit more adventurous, tiger snakes might take to the skies—well, at least their prey does. Small birds can become a satisfying addition to their diet.

Rodents: Like any self-respecting predator, tiger snakes have a soft spot for a good old-fashioned rodent feast. Mice and rats may find themselves on the menu when these slithering hunters are in the mood.

Now you might be wondering, how do tiger snakes actually catch their meals? 

Well, these cunning creatures employ their stealth and patience, patiently waiting for the perfect moment to strike. 

Once their venomous fangs sink into their prey, it’s game over for their unfortunate victim. Bon appétit, tiger snakes!

Breeding Behaviors: Love, Slither, and Reproduce

Shark video
Milking an Australian Tiger snake. Image: Depositphotos.

Ah, love is in the air, even for tiger snakes. When it’s breeding season, these serpents don’t hold back. Here’s a sneak peek into their romantic escapades:

  • Courtship: Male tiger snakes engage in a captivating courtship ritual to woo their potential mates. 

They engage in an intricate dance, intertwining their bodies and showcasing their strength and agility. It’s like a snake tango but with less fancy footwork and more impressive slithering.

  • Mating: Once a female is suitably impressed by her suitor’s moves, mating commences. 

Let’s just say, things can get a little tangled up during this process. It’s a snake version of “the birds and the Bees,” minus the feathers and buzzing.

  • Gestation: After successful mating, the female tiger snake undergoes a gestation period of several months. During this time, she carries her precious cargo of developing snakelets with great care.

  • Birth: When the time is right, the female tiger snake gives birth to a brood of live snakelets. These little ones enter the world ready to slither and explore their surroundings. It’s a true testament to the circle of life.

So, love is not lost on these legless creatures. 

They have their own unique way of finding romance and continuing the cycle of life. Just imagine a snake dance floor filled with slithering moves and serpentine seduction.

It’s a sight to behold!

Tiger Snake Predators: Who Dares Challenge the Tiger?

Even the mighty tiger snake is not invincible in the animal kingdom. Here are a few brave contenders that dare to challenge this venomous reptile:

  • Birds of Prey: Majestic raptors like eagles and hawks view tiger snakes as potential meals. With their aerial advantage, these feathered hunters swoop down from the sky to snatch up unsuspecting snakes.
  • Dingoes: Australia’s wild canines, the dingoes, have been known to tangle with tiger snakes. These formidable predators are not afraid to take on the challenge and add a bit of slithering spice to their diet.
  • Monitor Lizards: The larger species of monitor lizards, such as the perentie, are known to have a taste for tiger snakes. They engage in intense battles of strength and cunning to claim their prize.
  • Humans: Unfortunately, humans have also become a predator of sorts for tiger snakes. Habitat encroachment and human-wildlife conflict have led to interactions that can be detrimental to the survival of these snakes.

So, whether it’s an aerial assault from above, a wild canine encounter, a monitor lizard showdown, or human intervention, the tiger snake faces its fair share of challenges in the wild. Survival is not guaranteed, even for a venomous predator at the top of its game.

Tiger Snake Bite Venom Ranking: Venomous and Vicious

Hold on tight because the tiger snake packs quite a venomous punch! 

In the venomous snake hierarchy, the tiger snake proudly claims the title of the 5th most venomous snake on land in the entire world. Its potent venom can cause severe harm to those unfortunate enough to be on the receiving end of a bite.

But wait, there’s more! 

If you’re curious about the snake with the highest venom potency, look no further than the inland or western taipan (Oxyuranus microlepidotus). 

This Australian native holds the esteemed title of the most venomous snake in the world. Its venom has been deemed the deadliest based on tests on mice, earning it a fearsome reputation.

So, while the tiger snake boasts an impressive venom ranking, there are other serpents out there that surpass it in terms of sheer venomous power. It’s a competitive world in the snake kingdom, where venom can make all the difference.

Tiger Snake Bite: A Venomous Encounter

YouTube video


Being on the receiving end of a tiger snake bite is no laughing matter. Here’s what you can expect if you find yourself in this unfortunate predicament:

  • Local Swelling and Bruising: A tiger snake bite often leads to immediate local swelling and bruising around the bite site. It’s like a not-so-subtle reminder that the venomous encounter is taking its toll.
  • Non-Specific Symptoms: Beyond the bite area, non-specific symptoms may arise. Nausea, vomiting, headache, and abdominal pain can make an unwelcome appearance. It’s like a not-so-fun rollercoaster ride of discomfort.
  • Rare Collapse and Cardiac Arrest: In severe cases, a tiger snake bite can lead to rare but potentially life-threatening complications. 

Collapses and cardiac arrest are possibilities that require immediate medical attention. It’s a stark reminder of the danger these snakes pose.

Now, remember, prevention is the best medicine when it comes to avoiding a tiger snake bite. 

Respect their space and give them a wide berth in their natural habitats. If you do encounter a tiger snake, admire it from a safe distance and let it slither on its way.

Tiger Snake Speed: Swift Serpent Skills

When it comes to speed, the tiger snake knows how to make a quick getaway. 

While specific measurements may vary, tiger snakes are known for their impressive agility and ability to move swiftly

When motivated, they can slither at a pace that keeps them a step ahead of potential threats. 

So, if you’re thinking of challenging a tiger snake to a race, you might want to reconsider. They have a few slithering tricks up their scaly sleeves.

Speaking of snake venom, what is the most poisonous snake in Africa? 

The most poisonous snake in Africa, in terms of venom potency, is the boomslang (Dispholidus typus). Its venom is considered highly potent and toxic. 

Even in small quantities, the venom can have severe effects on the body.

What Kind Of Poison Does Tiger Snake Have?

Notechis scutatus possesses venom that is primarily neurotoxic, meaning it targets the nervous system

The venom contains a complex mixture of toxins, including presynaptic and postsynaptic neurotoxins, myotoxins, coagulants, and hemolysins

These toxins can cause various effects on the body, such as paralysis, muscle damage, blood clotting abnormalities, and destruction of red blood cells.

We are rounding off!

YouTube video


As we conclude this daring exploration into the world of Tiger snake bites, we hope you have gained a newfound understanding of the risks and challenges associated with encountering these venomous creatures. 

Remember, knowledge is key to staying safe and prepared in the face of wildlife encounters. 

So, venture forth with caution, armed with the wisdom to navigate the wild, and may your future encounters be filled with awe-inspiring wonder and respect for the captivating creatures that inhabit our world.

Thanks for reading along! Check out our related article links below, or have a look at our dedicated rattlesnake page to learn more!

Next up:

Join our Forum for free today!

Animal Forum
Click Here
Latest posts by Kiah Bettison (see all)
Top 10 States With The Most Cougar Top 10 States With The Most Moose Top 10 States With The Most Coyote Top 10 States With The Most Elk Jaguar Is The New Dog’s Best Friend