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Poisonous animals
Cnidarians (Jellyfish, Corals and Anemones)
Venomous fish
Hymenopterans (Bees, Wasps and Ants)
Sea snakes
Terrestrial snakes
Miscellaneous animals



Other sea snake genera

Clinical entries

For clinical data see section “Risk” below


  1. Acalyptophis
  2. Aipysurus 
  3. Disteira
  4. Emydocephalus
  5. Ephalophis
  6. Hydrelaps 
  7. Kerilia
  8. Kolpophis
  9. Lapemis
  10. Laticauda
  11. Microcephalophis
  12. Parahydrophis
  13. Pelamis
  14. Praescutata
  15. Thalassophis


The genera Acalyptophis, Disteira, Kerilia, Kolpophis, Lapemis, Microcephalophis, Pelamis, Praescutata and Thalassophis are placed in the genus Hydrophis by some authors (Leviton et al. 2014, Sanders et al. 2012, and Rasmussen et al. 2011).


Serpentes; Elapidae; Hydrophiinae or Laticaudinae (10.)

Common names


Sea snakes in general (excluding Pelamis): from the Persian Gulf to the coastal waters of Japan. Southwards to the Malay Peninsula, Indonesia, Philippines, New Guinea and Australia. Islands in the Pacific as far as Polynesia and northern New Zealand. Sometimes also at river mouths and further upstream.


Pelamis platurus: in coastal regions and on the open sea in the Indian and Pacific Ocean: in the west from the entire coast of Africa, in the east to the Pacific Coast of Central and South America (as far as Ecuador).


Laticauda crockeri: only in Lake Tegano (freshwater!) on Rennell Island, Solomon Islands.



Map 9 Hydrophiinae (including Laticaudinae, excluding Pelamis platurus).



Map 10 Pelamis platurus.


Fig. 4.51 Pelamis platurus.



See General information on sea snakes.


Accidents appear to be rare. There are no case reports on conclusively identified species. A report from northwest Malaysia has connected one fatality with Lapemis hardwickii and another fatality with Microcephalophis gracilis (Reid and Lim 1957).


Literature (biological)

Cogger 1975, 1987, 2000, Dunson 1975b, Gasperetti 1988, Leviton et al. 2014, Limpus 1975, 1987, Kropach 1975, Minton 1975, O'Shea 2005, Sanders et al. 2012, Rasmussen et al. 2011

The Reptile Database