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AROD > Reptiles / Squamata / Elapidae / Pseudechis

Black snakes
Pseudechis - Wagler, 1830

Pronunciation: sue-DECK-iss
Etymology: 'false Echis' - Echis is a genus of adders.

Taxonomic notes:

Statistics: Reproductive modes:
Oviparous - 7 out of 8 Australian species
Live-bearing - 1 out of 8 Australian species

Size range:
Smallest Australian species: Eastern pygmy mulga snake (Pseudechis pailsei) at 150 cm
 Longest Australian species: mulga snake (Pseudechis australis) at up to 280 cm
Number of Australian species: 8

mulga snake (Pseudechis australis)
Exmouth region, Western Australia
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
mulga snake (Pseudechis australis) distribution range map Pseudechis australis
Mulga snake
Year described
(Gray 1842)

spotted mulga snake (Pseudechis butleri)
Paynes Find, Western Australia
Photo © Ray Lloyd
spotted mulga snake (Pseudechis butleri) distribution range map Pseudechis butleri
Spotted mulga snake
Year described
Smith 1982

Collett's snake (Pseudechis colletti)
Muttaburra, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
Collett's snake (Pseudechis colletti) distribution range map Pseudechis colletti
Collett's snake
Year described
Boulenger 1902

spotted black snake (Pseudechis guttatus)
Glenmorgan, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
spotted black snake (Pseudechis guttatus) distribution range map Pseudechis guttatus
Spotted black snake
Year described
De Vis 1905

Eastern pygmy mulga snake (Pseudechis pailsei)
Mt Isa, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
Eastern pygmy mulga snake (Pseudechis pailsei) distribution range map Pseudechis pailsei
Eastern pygmy mulga snake
Year described
(Hoser 1998)
Species status uncertain (see Taxonomic notes below). Colouration varies from grey to tan to reddish-brown. Pattern largely absent on body, although body scales are often darker posteriorly, creating a subtle reticulated pattern. The neck and head are typically patterned with several dark lines and blotches, especially along sutures between head scales.

Papuan black snake (Pseudechis papuanus)
Saibai Island, Queensland
Photo © Tom Parkin
Papuan black snake (Pseudechis papuanus) distribution range map Pseudechis papuanus
Papuan black snake
Year described
Peters & Doria 1878

red-bellied black snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus)
Dalby, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
red-bellied black snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus) distribution range map Pseudechis porphyriacus
Red-bellied black snake
Year described
(Shaw 1794)

Western pygmy mulga snake (Pseudechis weigeli)
North Kimberley, Western Australia
Photo © Brendan Schembri
Western pygmy mulga snake (Pseudechis weigeli) distribution range map Pseudechis weigeli
Western pygmy mulga snake
Year described
(Wells & Wellington 1987)
Light brown to reddish brown in colour; dark-edged body scales form an obscure reticulated patter; dark streaks and spots present on head and neck, particularly along sutures of head scales, and sometimes continuing down the back as a series of spots. Most subcaudal scales single (a few posterior scales may be divided).

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