Are there snakes that can fly? The short answer is no, but that doesn’t mean you won’t see a snake gliding from tree to tree in some places. So let’s explore the possibility of flying snakes and see what we can learn.
Are there breeds of snakes that can fly?
When it comes to flying snakes, they are not the type you would imagine slithering through the sky.
Despite the name, flying snakes have no wings or means of aerial propulsion and aren’t capable of actual flight.
However, they make up for what they lack in wings with elaborate gliding techniques that allow them to travel as far as 100 meters from trees and other heights.
These snakes can move between trees quickly by flattening their ribs and body segments, transforming into an undulating ribbon and allowing the wind to carry them farther than regular slithering.
While amazing to behold, these snakes are found only in South East Asia and India, meaning those outside this region won’t experience this incredible feat firsthand.
What are Flying Snakes?
The idea of a flying snake has been around for centuries, with stories and legends describing these mythical creatures in far-off lands.
But the truth is, there are no snakes breeds with wings or any other ability to fly.
However, some species can “fly” using a unique technique called gliding.
Gliding is when an animal uses gravity and air currents to move through the air without actually flapping its wings (or, in this case, not having any wings).
Snakes That Can Glide
Several types of snakes have developed the ability to glide from higher-up locations like trees down to lower areas such as bushes or the ground.
The most common type is the “flying snake,” which includes Chrysopelea paradisi and Chrysopelea ornata.
These two species have adapted over time to flatten their bodies out into an overall shape when they jump from high places, allowing them to ride on air currents and catch updrafts, allowing them to travel for distances of up to 200 feet.
Other types include Chrysopelea rhodopleuron (the Malaysian Gliding Snake) and Chrysopelea taprobanica (the Sri Lankan Flying Snake).
They all possess flattened ribs, streamlined bodies, and loose skin that allows them to create lift while they glide through the air.
This gives them an advantage in escaping predators or moving between trees quickly without climbing back up first.
Four snakes & Lizards that can glide
1. The paradise tree snake
The paradise tree snake, also known as the flying snake, is a species of arboreal snake native to Southeast Asia. These snakes can glide through the air up to 100 meters by flattening their bodies and spreading their ribs. Paradise tree snakes are not venomous and pose no threat to humans.
2. The green tree python
The green tree python is a species of arboreal snake native to Australia and New Guinea.
These snakes can glide through the air for distances up to 50 meters by flattening their bodies and spreading their ribs. Green tree pythons are not venomous and pose no threat to humans.
3. The flying dragon
The flying dragon, also known as the gliding lizard, is a species of arboreal lizard native to Southeast Asia. These lizards can glide through the air for distances up to 50 meters by flattening their bodies and spreading their ribs.
Flying dragons are not venomous and pose no threat to humans.
4. The collared lizard
The collared lizard, also known as the frill-necked lizard, is an arboreal lizard native to Australia and New Guinea.
These lizards can glide through the air for up to 30 meters by flattening their bodies and spreading their ribs. Collared lizards are not venomous and pose no threat to humans.
While it may be true that there aren’t any breeds of snakes that can indeed fly, some species have picked up an impressive adaptation – gliding. With flattened bodies, streamlined shapes, and loose skin, these species can catch updrafts and glide for long distances before landing safely on the ground or another tree trunk nearby. So, if you ever find yourself wondering if there are breeds of snakes that can fly – now you know.