The Black Mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis) is a long thin snake with a distinctive coffin-shaped head.
It is not black. It is olive, brownish, yellow-brown or grey. The inside of its mouth is black.
It grows to approximately 3.2 metres (10.6 feet) long.
It is a very fast moving snake, active during the day (diurnal). It can climb trees, but it mainly moves along the ground.
It is the fastest, longest venomous snake in the world.
The Black Mamba likes coastal bush environments, as well as woodlands. It also likes sugarcane plantations. It is found in Africa.
The female lays about 6-17 eggs.
The Black Mamba eats mice, rats, bats, shrews, squirrels, birds, and other snakes. Animals that eat the Black Mamba include eagles and mongooses.
It is extremely venomous, causing death in humans. It is called an elapid. Elapids are venomous snakes with fangs.
It can live for about 11 years.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM