Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake

Snakes of World

The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake, also known as Lycodon jara, is a non-venomous species of snake found in Southeast Asia. This species is known for its unique scalation and distinctive appearance, as well as its natural history, habitat, behavior, and reproductive biology.

Description and Appearance:

The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is a relatively small species, with an average length of around 40-60 cm (16-24 inches). It has a slender, cylindrical body shape and a distinctive scalation pattern, with smooth dorsal scales arranged in 19-17-15 rows and rounded ventral scales numbering between 160-175. The scales on the tail are also smooth and rounded.
The coloration of the Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is brown or gray with darker stripes or blotches on its back. Its belly is lighter in color and may have darker spots or speckles. It has yellow or orange spots along its sides, which give it its name. The snake’s head is slightly broader than its neck, and it has small, round pupils in its eyes.

Natural History:

The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is primarily active at night and feeds on small mammals, such as rodents, as well as lizards and other small reptiles. Like other wolf snakes, it is known for its ability to produce a foul-smelling secretion when threatened, which serves as a deterrent to predators.


The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is found in a variety of habitats throughout Southeast Asia, including tropical rainforests, lowland forests, and agricultural areas. It is most commonly found in areas with dense vegetation and may also be found near streams and rivers.


The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is generally non-aggressive and shy, and will usually try to escape when confronted. However, if it feels threatened, it may display defensive behavior, such as hissing or puffing up its body. The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is not venomous, but may bite if it feels threatened or cornered.


Little is known about the reproductive biology of the Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake, but it is likely to be oviparous, laying eggs rather than giving birth to live young.

scalation pattern

The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake (Lycodon jara) has a distinct scalation pattern. Here are some details:

  1. Dorsal Scales: The snake has smooth and shiny dorsal scales that are arranged in 15 rows.
  2. Ventrals: The ventrals are also smooth and shiny, and the number of ventrals varies between 149-175.
  3. Subcaudals: The subcaudals are paired, and the number of subcaudals varies between 44-51.
  4. Anal Plate: The anal plate is divided.
  5. Head Scales: The head of the Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is elongated and has a distinct pattern of scales. The head scales are small and smooth, with no loreal scale.
  6. Eye Scales: The eye of the snake is large, and it has a round pupil. The eye scales are small, with a single preocular and two postocular scales.
  7. Other Scales: The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake has 7-8 upper labials, with the fourth and fifth labials contacting the eye. It also has 8-9 lower labials.

Location and Conservation:

The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is found throughout Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Malaysia. Its range is currently not considered to be under threat, and it is listed as a species of least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). However, like many other species in the region, it is potentially threatened by habitat loss due to deforestation and other human activities. The Yellow-speckled Wolf Snake is a unique and interesting species found in Southeast Asia. Its distinctive scalation pattern, natural history, and behavior make it a fascinating creature to study, and its non-aggressive nature makes it a valuable part of the local ecosystem. The protection of its habitat is crucial for the conservation of this species and the maintenance of biodiversity in the region.

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