PREVALENCE: Not common
ACTIVE PERIOD: Active at night
KEY ID FEATURES: Tan to dark brown with darker lateral and dorsal stripes running the length of the body
BEHAVIOR: Aquatic, rarely found outside of water, fast to swim away, not considered dangerous
SIZE: Small - 60-80cm
OTHER: Can be mistaken with other aquatic snakes
QUICK ASSESSMENT 0-10
IMPORTANT: Most snakes can be found to have significant variance in coloration and pattern even within the same species. There can also be extreme differences in appearance from juveniles to adults so it is important to never assume you have properly identified a snake.
A typical water snake, the Striped Stream Snake has evolved with eyes and nostrils placed towards the top of the head and a narrow snout that helps with foraging under rocks. Ranging in color from tan to dark brown with dark lateral stripes running the length of the body.
Nocturnal, the Striped Stream Snake is often found in or immediately next to slow moving bodies of water. Quick to flee into the water and hide under rocks, they are difficult to catch or observe. As with most water snakes they will squirm vigorously if handled but are not quick to bite or musk.
Generally found on Lantau and the New Territories near streams and catch waters, the Striped Stream Snake is not know to be widely distributed around hong kong.
NO SNAKE SHOULD EVER BE HANDLED BY ANYONE BUT EXPERTS: Can be mistaken for other water snakes though generally not easily confused with venomous species.