Chequered Keelback

Fowlea piscator

Description 2


  • Non Venomous
  • Other names : Asiatic water snake.
  • One of the most commonly seen snakes in India.
  • Known to be aggressive and keen to bite if nervous.
  • Among the Natricine snakes or Keelbacks.


  • Medium-sized body with keeled scales but looks glossy overall.
  • Checkered pattern all over body in variations of green, yellow and brown.
  • Often has two streaks from eyes and has round pupils.
  • Looks just like the Bar necked keelback found northeast of Orissa.
  • Grow to 3-4 feet on average. Some may reach 5 feet too.


  • Extremely common throughout India.
  • Found near fresh water bodies like ponds, rivers, lakes and paddy fields.
  • Known to flourish around urban areas with close by water bodies.


  • Feed on frogs, toads, fish and sometimes rodents and birds too.
  • Juveniles feed on tadpoles and water insects.
  • Semi-aquatic, active by day and night, hunting on edges of water bodies.
  • Alert and aggressive, usually tries to escape in a jumpy manner.
  • When threatened, inflates neck to show a false hood and raising head.
  • Very fast, excited, jumpy and constantly tries to bite.
  • Readily bites and holds on giving painful bites with it's sharp teeth.
  • Also reported to lose tail if needed in order to escape.

Sources and Credits

  1. (c) Vinay Gogula, all rights reserved, uploaded by Vinay Gogula
  2. (c) Vinay Gogula, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)

More Info

iNat Map

Found Common
Toxicity Non-Venomous