Reptiles and Amphibians of Thailand

Thailand's Snakes, Lizards, Turtles, and Frogs

Triangle Keelback

Xenochrophis trianguligerus

This snake is found in Thailand but not in Bangkok
Triangle Keelback Xenochrophis trianguligerus งูลายสอลายสามเหลี่ยม thailand kaeng krachen
Triangle Keelback in Kaeng Krachen National Park (Thai National Parks / CC BY-SA)

English name: Triangle Keelback
Scientific name: Xenochrophis trianguligerus
Thai name: งูลายสอลายสามเหลี่ยม (Ngu Lai Sor Lai Sam Liam)

Description: To 1.35m in length. Gray to grayish-brown or olive with striking red, reddish-orange or yellow-orange color on the sides in the front half of the body. Distinct black triangles mark the sides at regular intervals. Head is gray to olive with lighter lips. Belly is white or yellow.

Relevant scale counts: 19 midbody scale rows. Dorsal scales are keeled.

Similar Species: Yellow-spotted Keelback has black markings that form bars or checkers rather than distinct triangles.
Malayan Spotted Keelback lacks the black triangles and reddish coloration and has black margins on every belly scale.

Range: From northeast India and Myanmar throughout southeast Asia into Malaysia and Indonesia.

Habitat: Lowland forest and other areas near ponds, puddles, swamps, and other bodies of water.

Place in the ecosystem: Feeds primarily on frogs, as well as fish and lizards. Would be eaten by civets, larger snakes and monitors.

Danger to humans: Is a rear-fanged snake but its venom properties and potential danger are unknown.

Conservation status and threats: No known threats.

Interesting facts: Like other species in the Xenochrophis and Fowlea groups, the Triangle Keelback is an excellent swimmer and be spotted gliding rapidly over the water’s surface, especially in early evening.

References:
Ecology Asia: Triangle Keelback
Thai National Parks: Triangle Keelback
A new species of the natricine snake genus Amphiesma from Borneo
Field Guide to Reptiles of South-East Asia

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