Distribution: South-west and south-east Australia including Tasmania
Habitat: Found around swamps and rivers.
Description: The coloured patterns on Tiger Snakes differ widely depending on where they are found in Australia. Most will be a variation of brown, black, grey or yellow with alternating dark and light bands. Tiger Snakes in South Australia and around the Bass Strait are often black with no pattern. Those from Tasmania can be black, grey or yellow without coloured bands. Tiger Snakes in WA are usually black with yellow bands, hence their name.
Diet: Tiger Snakes are carnivores and, depending on where they are found, will eat various types of frogs, lizards, birds and mammals.
In the wild: Tiger Snakes are one of the world’s deadliest snakes. While they are most active during they day, these snakes can sometimes be found hunting at night. Tiger Snakes have a reputation for being aggressive due to the position they take when confronted. The Tiger Snake flattens its head and neck and raises itself like a cobra, hoping to frighten its provoker. This is mostly a defensive posture and the snake will rarely bite unless provoked.
Threats: Like many of Australia’s animals, Tiger Snakes are threatened by habitat destruction. They are also persecuted by humans who often panic when they come across a snake in the wild. If you see a Tiger Snake in the wild, stop, turn around and walk (don’t run) the other way. Do not attempt to remove or harm the snake.
At Perth Zoo: You can see a Tiger Snake in Perth Zoo’s Reptile Encounter.
Did you know? Female Tiger Snakes are viviparous, which means they give birth to live young and don’t lay eggs. Litter sizes have been known to exceed 30.