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False Coral Snake: Aniliidae

Physical Characteristics, Geographic Range, Behavior And ReproductionHABITAT, DIET, FALSE CORAL SNAKES AND PEOPLE, CONSERVATION STATUS

This snake spends much of its time in burrows in loose soil. It lives in rainforests, especially in low-lying areas near streams or other waterways.

The false coral snake is a nonpoisonous snake and usually stays underground during the daytime. (Illustration by Jonathan Higgins. Reproduced by permission.)

False coral snakes eat long and narrow vertebrates (VER-teh-brehts), which are animals with backbones. These include small snakes, eels, caecilians, and amphisbaenians. Caecilians (seh-SEE-lee-ens) are salamanderlike animals that live underground. Amphisbaenians (am-fizz-BANE-ee-ens) are smallheaded, short-tailed lizards that also make their homes below ground.

People and false coral snakes rarely see one another.

The World Conservation Union (IUCN) considers the false coral snake to be Data Deficient, which means that scientists as yet have too little information to make a judgment about the threat of extinction. Destruction and other changes to their habitat, however, are probably threatening at least some populations.



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Web sites

"Family Aniliidae." EMBL (European Molecular Biology Laboratory) Reptile Database. http://www.embl-heidelberg.de/uetz/families/Aniliidae.html (accessed on September 28, 2004).

Lovera, A. "Anilius scytale (false coral snake, pipe snake, and red pipe snake)." Animal Diversity Web. http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Anilius_scytale.html (accessed on February 2, 2005).

"Pipe Snake (Anilius scytale). Animal Planet.com. http://animal.discovery.com/fansites/jeffcorwin/carnival/slithering/pipesnake.html (accessed on February 2, 2005).

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceDinosaurs, Snakes, and Other Reptiles