Mexico is one of the most unique locations on the Earth because of the diversity of the fauna and flora, culture, history, cuisine, and its pristine beaches. The state is about 2 million square kilometers big and the ecosystem that you can find in this region is very unique. While enjoying the lovely things in Mexico, you should also pay attention to the snakes there.

There are over 500 mammal species, the highest number of rodents in the world, and over 800 species of reptiles. Mexico is one of the locations where you can find hundreds of snakes. 

There are over 381 snake species in Mexico. The dangerous snakes in the country are categorized in types with four major groups:

  • coral snakes
  • vipers
  • colubrid
  • sea snakes

During your travel to the country, we want to prepare you to ensure that you feel safe.

Here are some snakes that you can encounter in Mexico.

Querétaro Dusky Rattlesnake

The Queretaro dusky rattlesnake is one of the legendary species that you can encounter in Mexico. It is a pit viper, and it thrives in the highlands of central Mexico

They are heavily bodied in nature and can grow up to 50 centimeters long. These creatures usually vary in color ranging from yellow, greenish, brown, and tan.

You can encounter these snakes found in the rocky habitats and the grassy fields which cover the central and the southern part of Mexico. The other regions where you are likely to find them include grassy mountain meadows, pine-oak forests, and stony mesquite grasslands.

They have a very highly potent venom. You should avoid them at all costs because they are very aggressive. The venom is hemotoxic and neurotoxic which means that it affects the central nervous system and blood. Whenever they bite, they usually cause swelling of the region, tissue death and hemorrhage.

Further reading: Dangerous animals in Mexico

Black-Banded Cat-Eyed Snake

The black-banded cat-eyed snakes usually grow up to 30 inches long. They have slender bodies and large elliptical pupils.

You can encounter them in a wide array of environments such as parks, suburban and industrial developments. They have a very effective venom. You should always ensure to avoid the areas that are inhabited by these snakes.

Their diet consists of lizards, toads, frogs, and salamanders.

Banded Rock Rattlesnake

The banded rock rattlesnake is one of the pit viper species found in the northern parts of Mexico.  This is among the most dangerous snakes in Mexico. They are native to the Baja California, Chihuahua, and the neighboring states.

You can encounter them with their grey, tan, black, and other unique colors. These snakes are very protective in nature and will attack at any moment whenever they feel threatened.

They have potent hemotoxic venom that usually affects the circulatory system and the central nervous system. When this happens, the vital organs are usually crushed. 

They are nocturnal creatures and you will find them active in the evening and at night. These snakes usually prefer the mountainous region of the country.

Read more: Rarest snakes in the world

Northern Cat-Eyed Snake

You can find these snakes in different parts of Mexico. They can grow up to 39 inches long and the males can be longer than the females. These snakes have smooth scales and they have dark brown lines and dark brown blotches on the body.

The head is wider than the neck, they have large bulging eyes, and they have some of the reddish irises from the Mexican snakes. These snakes are arboreal and they are mostly active during the night. Therefore, it can be difficult for you to encounter them in the wild.

However, you will probably find them hunting for food, which might vary from snakes, toads, and lizards. They have very enlarged fangs that they use to inject venom into their system.

Read more: Dangerous animals in Guatemala


The fer-de-lance is a unique snake that thrives in Mexico. You can find them in different places in Mexico.

They have a V-shaped head which looks like a spear. You should avoid the areas where you can encounter them. These snakes also inhabit Central and South America. They like the lowland habitats, such as riverbanks, forest areas and areas inhabited by humans.

They have very unpredictable and aggressive behavior. It is considered one of the most dangerous snakes that you will find in Mexico. 

The fer-de-lance is one of the leading cases of snake bites in the Yucatan region.

Read more: Dangerous animals in Cancun

Twin-Spotted Rattlesnake

The twin spotted rattlesnake is a relatively smaller species and they are slender with highly potent venom. You can encounter them in northern Mexico and Southwestern United States

You can easily differentiate the twin-spotted rattlesnakes from others because they usually have two lines and dark spots that run down their bodies. They come in colors such as black, and grey

These snakes are known to populate the high elevation areas in Mexico.  You can find them in the states of Mexico such as Durango, Chihuahua, and Sonora.

While these snakes might seem to be smaller than the other species in the region, they are very dangerous and you should avoid them. They have impeccable venom and this usually affects the central nervous system and the blood.

Read more: Dangerous animals in Puerto Vallarta

Mojave Green

This is another species that thrives in Mexico. They are the most deadly snakes that you can encounter in the region. They are a highly venomous rattlesnake. These snakes are more common in the deserts of northern Mexico and the central parts.

They usually grow up to 4 feet long. Their colors vary from light green to dusty brown. You can recognize them by their dark diamond pattern on the back and they have wide stripes near the end of the tail. These are some of the most venomous snakes in Mexico because they have neurotoxic venom.

This venom is also hemotoxic, which can affect the normal functioning of blood. When they bite, some of the symptoms include difficulty breathing, respiratory failure, and vision impairment.

Yellow-Bellied Sea Snake

The yellow-bellied sea snake is one of the most legendary species that you can encounter in Mexico. Not all the dangerous snakes in the country are found on land, some of them thrive in the sea. The yellow-bellied snake is a very good swimmer.

They are slender in nature and can grow up to 35 inches long. They are brown with yellow bellies.

These snakes can stay in the water for up to 3 hours as they move from one location to another looking for food. The snake usually consumes eels and small fishes. They usually lie motionless on the water looking like pieces of items drifting, which then fools their prey. 

They are very venomous snakes that you should look out for during your trip to Mexico. The yellow-bellied sea snake’s venom is highly potent. When it enters the system, it is going to cause the paralysis of the central nervous system.

Chicken Snake

The chicken snake is some of the iconic species that you can encounter in Mexico. They are known for their yellow color and irregular black cross-bands. Chicken snakes have a yellow snout and they can grow up to 9 feet long.

They are some of the longest snakes in Mexico. These snakes are very unique because they can be arboreal and crawl through trees, as you can encounter them in forested areas. You will mostly find them at night.

These snakes are very territorial, and, while they are not very aggressive, then they are likely to attack you with immediate effect. They usually increase their size to intimidate their opponent.

Puffing Snake

This is a common snake in Mexico and they are known as a bird snake in some states. These snakes usually grow up to 107 inches long. They come in different colors, such as lavender, orange, yellow and grey.

They have medium to large eyes and round black pupils. These snakes are arboreal and they like spending their time on trees. They usually consume a wide array of creatures, such as insects, lizards, frogs, birds, and other small animals. 

While they are nonvenomous in nature, there is a high chance they can bite and deliver high amounts of bacteria to the victim. 

Coral Snake

The coral snakes are some of the brightly colored and beautiful snakes that you can encounter in Mexico. They are some of the iconic species that you can see in the country.

These beautiful colors should not fool you because they are very dangerous as they are some of the most toxic and deadliest snakes in Mexico.

Their venom is highly potent, and it usually causes paralysis of the central nervous system as the blood is affected by the venom. Whenever the venom is injected into the victim, it is known to cause muscular paralysis, double vision, and slurred speech. The venom can cause complete stoppage of the vital organs such as the heart, lungs as well as brain. 

While their venom is very dangerous, they are considered less dangerous than rattlesnakes because they have weaker teeth. However, you should not underestimate them. They like living under rocks and logs, where they can regulate their temperatures.

Speckled Racer

This is one of the most common snakes in Mexico. They usually grow up to 40 inches long. These snakes come in black, blue, and yellow spots on the body.

Speckled racers are very unique, as they can adapt to different climatic conditions and areas. These areas include savannas, humid lowlands, forest edges, pastures, forests, and on roadsides.

Their unique color allows them to blend perfectly with the environment and they are likely to attack you immediately. They have a highly potent venom and they are known for self-defense and territorial nature.

Red Coffee Snake

The red coffee snake is a species found in tropical forests, savannas, and agricultural areas of Mexico. They usually grow up to 39 centimeters long. Also, they are characterized by their black stripes and yellow marking on the head. 

Red coffee snakes are good at hunting a wide array of species such as slugs, snails, lizards, and frogs. While they are not venomous, they usually carry large amounts of bacteria, which can cause severe health complications.

Aurimas Bio

Hi there! I’m Aurimas, a man behind Go Look Explore. I’m passionate about hiking, exploring off-the-beaten-path destinations, and everything outdoors related. Let’s connect.