Stephen’s Banded Snake (Hoplocephalus stephensii)

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DESCRIPTION – Dark gray to black with cream-yellow banding, often more distinct in juveniles. Lighter face blotched with black markings, grey ventral scales. Grows to 110cm. 21 mid body scales, 225-250 ventral, 50-70 sub ventral, anal single. Family: Elapidae.

DISTRIBUTION – Maryborough, QLD to the NSW Central Coast northern regions. Isolated QLD populations near Kroombit Tops and Eungella. Forests, rainforests, granite outcroppings, and scrubland. Rare in Brisbane region.

ECOLOGY – Nocturnal. Terrestrial/Arborea, regularly sheltering under bark of standing trees, feeds frogs, lizards, small mammals. Ovoviviparous, 2-17 live young.

VENOM – HIGHLY VENOMOUS – Neurotoxic, myotoxic, coagulopathic components. While not considered as dangerous as many elapids, rapid onset of serious symptoms (particularly coagulopathy) following bites are known to occur. Should be considered dangerously venomous.

Updated November 2019 from Eipper, S. & Eipper, T. (2019) A Naturalists Guide To The Snakes Of Australia. John Beaufoy Publishing.