The two species of vine snakes in Costa Rica have many common names including Green Vine Snake, Flatbread Snake and the Mexican or Brown Vine Snake.
Of these two species of Vine Snakes, the Green Narrow-headed Vine Snake is found from southern Mexico and Belize through Central America and into the Amazon Rainforest. The Brown Narrow-headed Vine Snake covers a similar range, and the species at times may be considered conspecific in some places. Another species of Vine Snakes in the family colubridae, Ahaetulla nasuta, is found in Southeast Asia.
Its habitat is mangrove swamp, lowland wet tropical rainforest, dry forest and disturbed areas. The Green Vine Snake is found in wet tropical forest, but the the Brown Vine Snake is usually found in savannahs or dry forest. When looking for Vine Snakes in Costa Rica, the national parks of Palo Verde National Park, Corcovado National Park, Piedras Blancas National Park, Carara National Park, Tortuguero National Park and Cahuita National Park are among some of the locations where they can be found.
Mating & Reproduction
Vine Snakes are oviparous which means that they produce live young. They regularly have a brood between three to six snakes, but the clutch size may be more or less depending on the region. Vine Snakes mate year long, but the occurrence of breeding increases in the rainy season in Costa Rica. In other parts of the world, the mating season and clutch size differs.
Camouflage, venom and neck inflation (in certain species) all contribute to the Vine Snakes hunting and protection. They often hunt lizards, birds, frogs, small mammals and insects by day. The venom of Vine Snakes is effective on small prey, but it hasn’t proved to be much of a problem for humans. The Vine Snake is rear fanged, and most Vine Snakes are not hostile to humans with great regularity, either.
The Green and Brown Narrow-headed Vine Snake has binocular like vision due to the shape of its head. Many collectors keep Vine Snakes, and consider them to be prized possessions. This is because they will take mice and rats as live prey in their large terrariums.
Where to see it in Costa Rica: Palo Verde National Park, Corcovado National Park, Piedras Blancas National Park, Carara National Park, Tortuguero National Park, Cahuita National Park
Diet: lizards, birds, frogs, mammals, insects
Migration Pattern: non-migratory
Habitat: mangrove swamp, lowland wet tropical forest, dry forest, disturbed areas, savannahs
Size: length=1.5-2 m weight=undefined
Species: Oxybelis aeneus, Oxybelis fulgidus