20 Deadliest and Most Venomous Snakes Ever

The world is full of deadly, venomous, and dangerous snakes, so you’d better know how to avoid them! Snakes have been roaming our planet for thousands of years. In fact, they have been ingrained in various religions and cultures, like Hinduism.

However, though they are mystical and enigmatic creatures, let’s not forget that their bites and venom can also be terribly fatal. And, if you don’t die from a bite, know that the whole experience is one of the most gruesome and painful you could ever imagine.

King Cobra

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The king cobra is the world’s longest venomous snake. If threatened, its neck or hood of skin around its head will flare out, resembling the headdress of the Egyptian pharaohs.

A king cobra’s venom can kill a human in 15 minutes! For a better picture, it can bring down and kill an adult elephant within a few hours.

Black Mamba

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The black mamba is Afria’s deadliest snake; it can even kill a human adult with just two drops of its potent venom! The mamba’s venom is lethal because it attacks a human’s nervous system, making it unable to work correctly.

They are brownish in color, but their names come from their hauntingly black mouths. They are fast and undoubtedly deadly, growing up to over two meters long.

Inland Taipan

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Another dangerous and incredibly venomous snake from Australia is the inland taipan. Though it rarely comes into contact with humans, its bite and venom pack a punch, and if you get bitten, you’d better pray for a miracle.

Inland taipan’s venom is incredibly unique. Unlike others that can cause bleeding and instant nerve damage, it has hyaluronidase enzyme—an enzyme that increases the absorption of toxins in the body.

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake

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The eastern diamondback rattlesnake is a dangerous and venomous snake that can be found in the Americas. It’s widely known as the largest and heaviest known rattlesnake species, with a known specimen measuring around 2.4 meters long and weighing around 15.4 kilograms.

Aside from its size and weight, the eastern diamondback rattlesnake is feared because it has the reputation of being the most venomous snake in North America, with a mentioned mortality rate of 20 to 30%. It also leads to hemorrhagic activity, leading to excessive bleeding and even heart failure.

Coastal Taipan

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One thing that makes the coastal taipan so dangerous is that it can bite you multiple times before you even become aware of the first bite. This is because it moves incredibly fast and stealthily!

The coastal taipan’s antivenom was only invented in 1956; before that, almost every bite from this snake had been fatal. This is mainly because its venom contains neurotoxins, which damage nerves and prevent them from doing their job.


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Another deadly snake in Africa is called the boomslang. In fact, it’s so fatal that after 25 hours of being bitten by a juvenile boomslang, a herpetologist named Karl Patterson Schmidt died from internal bleeding in his brain, heart, lungs, and eyes.

Aside from inevitable demise, a bite from a boomslang also causes a gruesome and bloody death. Like what Schmidt experienced, victims will start excreting blood for every possible exit of their body—even from their gums and nostrils!


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A bite from a fer-de-lance will bring its prey a dark and bleak death—literally so. This is because a person’s body tissue turns black as it dies if it’s bitten by a fer-de-lance.

Their venom can digest tissue, later causing tissue necrosis or death. Due to its anticoagulant effects, the venom could also cause severe swelling and bleeding.

Russell’s Viper

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Another venomous and deadly snake that is not in Africa is Russell’s viper. This deadly snake can instead be found in India, where it is responsible for a big chunk of the country’s 58,000 deaths a year.

Russell’s Viper can also be found in countries like Sri Lanka, where it attacks farmers on fields. When they do so, victims die from kidney failure, multiple organ damage, and severe blood loss.

Eastern Tiger Snake

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Unlike other venomous snakes native to Africa, the eastern tiger snake came from Australia. It’s specifically native to the continent’s grasslands and mountains.

The eastern tiger snake’s potent venom can cause poison to spread in a human in 15 minutes after just a bite! They are considered so dangerous because they cause at least one death a year on average.

Saw-Scaled Viper

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The saw-scaled viper is considered one of the deadliest snakes in India, alongside Russell’s viper. Though it’s the smallest member of what they call “the big four,” it’s responsible for the most bites and snake-related deaths in India.

Right after getting bitten, a victim will have swelling and pain and then a hemorrhage. If left untreated, it can lead to internal bleeding and, later on, acute kidney failure.

Banded Krait

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When elders warn you to be careful at night, one possible reason is the banded krait. It’s a snake that moves slowly during the day but can strike in a flash after dark!

As the venom from its bite spreads across your body, you’ll slowly realize that your muscles are starting to get paralyzed. Later on, the victim will suffocate as the diaphragm is prevented from moving because of the venom, thus stopping air from entering the lungs.

Indian Cobra

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The Indian cobra is another species of cobra that is among India’s top four most venomous snakes. Even so, it’s one of the most revered snakes in Hindu mythology and is commonly seen with snake charmers in the country.

This snake’s venom causes gaps in the nerves, leading to paralyzed muscles. Severe bites also cause respiratory failure or cardiac arrest.

Common Death Adder

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The common death adder is one of the most venomous snakes in Australia. It, however, typically feeds on frogs, lizards, and birds.

Unlike other snakes that roam around, the common death adder simply sits in place and waits for prey to come near it. When prey does come, it strikes fast, and venom spreads throughout its body.

Eastern Brown Snake

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The eastern brown snake is considered to be the world’s second-most venomous land snake—right after the inland taipan. Its venom mainly targets the circulatory system, leading to excessive bleeding, cardiovascular collapse, and heart failure.

Aside from this, the eastern brown snake is fast and can easily outrun a human running at full speed. No matter how fast you move, you won’t be able to escape the eastern brown snake once it sets its eyes on you!

Puff Adder

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The puff adder lives in the grasslands and savannahs of Morocco, Western Arabia, and other parts of Africa. It is widely distributed throughout these places, making it a significant contributor to snakebite fatalities in this region.

Fighting a nasty bite from a puff adder is ugly, as it can cause watery blood to ooze out from the puncture wounds. It can also cause nausea, vomiting, blood blisters, and more.

Cottonmouth Moccasin

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The cottonmouth moccasin can be found in some swamps in Virginia, Florida, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Georgia. When threatened, it coils its body and displays its fangs. Adult cottonmouths can deliver a painful—and even fatal—bite, so it’s best to steer clear of these snakes.

However, if bitten, be ready for a fight. Though deaths from a cottonmouth moccasin are rare, its bite can sometimes require amputation.

Mojave Rattlesnake

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As its name suggests, the Mojave rattlesnake can be commonly found in broad desert valleys. However, it can also be found in lower mountain slopes, woodlands, and grasslands.

The Mojave rattlesnake usually strikes and bites even when disturbed and provoked. They have what is called the Mojave toxin, a major lethal protein that targets the cardiovascular system.

Olive Sea Snake

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If you thought you’d be safe in water, think again. The olive sea snake is one of the most common sea snakes found off the coast of Australia.

Olive sea snakes grow over two feet in length, have a flattened tail, and have a large lung that allows them to swim for more extended periods of time. They are highly venomous but often focus on hunting fish, prawns, and crabs.

Mulga Snake

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According to the Australian Museum, the mulga snake is one of the most formidable snakes in Australia. Although several species of mulga snakes have been proposed, only one species is currently universally recognized.

Aside from injecting venom into their prey, mulga snakes are known to bite savagely, hang on, and chew on their prey as they inject the toxins into their victims’ blood. Their venom affects muscles, nerve cells, and blood cells.

Red-Bellied Black Snake

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We mostly know about encounters with king cobras, rattlesnakes, and others. However, on the east coast of Australia, one of the most encountered snakes in the wild is the red-bellied black snake.

When bitten, victims will experience swelling, nausea, headache, abdominal pain, and more. They’ll also feel weak and have red-brown urine due to damaged muscle tissues.

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Author: Karen Danao


Karen is a writer and also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, she is someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics she loves writing about! However, her true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.