Other Free Encyclopedias » Animal Life Resource » Dinosaurs, Snakes, and Other Reptiles » Pipe Snakes: Cylindrophiidae - Physical Characteristics, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Red-tailed Pipe Snake (cylindrophis Ruffus): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, PIPE SNAKES AND PEOPLE, CONSERVATION STATUS

Pipe Snakes: Cylindrophiidae - Red-tailed Pipe Snake (cylindrophis Ruffus): Species Account

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Physical characteristics: The small, nonvenomous (nahn-VEH-nuh-mus) red-tailed pipe snake is a black snake with reddish or white bands. The back is slightly iridescent (IH-rih-DEH-sent), which means that it reflects different colors depending on how light bounces off. In the bright sunshine, for example, the scales may shine blue, green, yellow, or red. The undersides have a black and white checkerboard pattern, except for the tail. The tail is banded with black, white, and sometimes red and has a red tip. Adults usually reach about 15.5 to 16 inches (39 to 41 centimeters) long but can grow to about twice that size.


Geographic range: Red-tailed pipe snakes are found in southern China and much of Indonesia and southeast Asia.

The red-tailed pipe snake is mostly known for its behavior when it feels threatened. The snake will flatten out its body and raise its tail, moving it much as a cobra would wave its flattened neck and head. (Illustration by Bruce Worden. Reproduced by permission.)

Habitat: Red-tailed pipe snakes spend most of their time under leaves or in burrows that they can dig themselves. They live in forests, often near a water source, and in rice paddies, but they may also live in nearby villages and towns.


Diet: It eats other snakes, lizards, and eels. A constrictor, it is able to squeeze the prey animals until they cannot breathe and either pass out or die before being eaten.


Behavior and reproduction: The red-tailed pipe snake is mostly known for its behavior when it feels threatened. The snake will flatten out its body and raise its tail, moving it much as a cobra would wave its flattened neck and head. Although the tail can do no harm, the display is often enough to convince an attacking animal to leave the snake alone. This species gives birth to baby snakes rather than eggs. The females typically have two young at a time but occasionally have up to twelve. Young are about 7 inches (18 centimeters) long at birth.

Red-tailed pipe snakes and people: Humans and these snakes have little contact.


Conservation status: These species are not listed as endangered or threatened. Like many other species that live much of their lives underground, however, scientists have little information about their numbers in the wild. ∎

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Books

Burnie, David, and Don Wilson, eds. The Definitive Visual Guide to the World's Wildlife. New York: DK Publishing, 2001.

Mattison, C. The Encyclopedia of Snakes. New York: Facts on File, 1995.

Mehrtens, John M. Living Snakes of the World in Color. New York: Sterling Publishing, 1987.

Zug, G. R., L. J. Vitt, and J. P. Caldwell. Herpetology: An Introductory Biology of Amphibians and Reptiles. 2nd ed. San Diego: Academic Press, 2001.

Web sites

Cylindrophis maculates (Linne's Earth Snake) Linne 1754." Upeka Premaratne. http://members.fortunecity.com/ukp001/naja/cylindrophiidae/cylindrophis_maculatus.htm (accessed on September 22, 2004).

"Red-tailed Pipe Snake." Ecology Asia. http://www.ecologyasia.com/Vertebrates/red-tailed_pipe_snake.htm (accessed on September 22, 2004).

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about 9 years ago

iam doin a project on it