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Brown snakes
Pseudonaja - Günther, 1858

Pronunciation: SUE-doh-NAY-ah
Etymology: 'false Naja', after a genus of cobra.

Taxonomic notes:

Statistics: Reproductive modes:
Oviparous - 9 out of 9 Australian species

Size range:
Smallest Australian species: ringed brown snake (Pseudonaja modesta) at 60 cm
 Longest Australian species: dugite (Pseudonaja affinis) at up to 200 cm
Number of Australian species: 9

dugite (Pseudonaja affinis)
Boxer Island, Western Australia
Photo © Rob Valentic
dugite (Pseudonaja affinis) distribution range map Pseudonaja affinis
Year described
Günther 1872

shield-snouted brown snake (Pseudonaja aspidorhyncha)
Quilpie, Queensland
Photo © Rob Valentic
shield-snouted brown snake (Pseudonaja aspidorhyncha) distribution range map Pseudonaja aspidorhyncha
Shield-snouted brown snake
Year described
(McCoy 1879)
Strap-like rostral scale giving the snout a chisel-like shape when viewed from above.1 Whitish to pale grey mouth lining.1

speckled brown snake (Pseudonaja guttata)
Windorah, Queensland
Photo © David Fischer
speckled brown snake (Pseudonaja guttata) distribution range map Pseudonaja guttata
Speckled brown snake
Year described
(Parker 1926)

Peninsula brown snake (Pseudonaja inframacula)
Yorke Peninsula, South Australia
Photo © Rob Valentic
Peninsula brown snake (Pseudonaja inframacula) distribution range map Pseudonaja inframacula
Peninsula brown snake
Year described
(Waite 1925)

Ingram's brown snake (Pseudonaja ingrami)
Lorna Downs Station, Queensland
Photo © Rob Valentic
Ingram's brown snake (Pseudonaja ingrami) distribution range map Pseudonaja ingrami
Ingram's brown snake
Year described
(Boulenger 1908)
Light to dark brown, black or reddish-brown above, usually with darker flecks on scale edges. Head and neck sometimes darker than body; belly colouration variable, but generally pale to yellow and with a paired series of orange dots anteriorly. Mouth-lining is bluish grey to black. Iris is dark. Seven lower labial scales.

western brown snake (Pseudonaja mengdeni)
Leinster, Western Australia
Photo © Jordan Vos
western brown snake (Pseudonaja mengdeni) distribution range map Pseudonaja mengdeni
Western brown snake
Year described
Wells & Wellington 1985
General occurs in one of two colour forms: orange with black head, or 'pale head, grey nape'.1

ringed brown snake (Pseudonaja modesta)
Hamelin Pool, Western Australia
Photo © David Fischer
ringed brown snake (Pseudonaja modesta) distribution range map Pseudonaja modesta
Ringed brown snake
Year described
(Günther 1872)

northern brown snake (Pseudonaja nuchalis)
Juvenile animal - Katherine, Northern Territory
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
northern brown snake (Pseudonaja nuchalis) distribution range map Pseudonaja nuchalis
Northern brown snake
Year described
Günther 1858

eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis)
Ipswich, Queensland
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis) distribution range map Pseudonaja textilis
Eastern brown snake
Year described
(Duméril, Bibron & Duméril 1854)

  1. Skinner, Adam (2009). A multivariate morphometric analysis and systematic review of Pseudonaja (Serpentes, Elapidae, Hydrophiinae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 155:171-197.
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