of South East Queensland

Eastern Small-eyed

Cryptophis nigrescens
Other common names: Eastern Small-eyed Snake.
Small-eyed snake
Significance to Humans: Highly Venomous
Bites from this species have caused one human fatality. Will bite readily and thrash about if handled. Bites from this species should be treated immediately and attended to with correct first aid.

General description: Small black eyes barely discernible from surrounding dark scales. Colour generally glossy dark grey to black with cream or pink belly, sometimes with dark spots. Belly colour does not extend up onto sides, and is not visible as it is on the Red-bellied Black Snake. Midbody scales at 15 rows.

Average Length: 50cm but specimens to 90cm are known.

Habitat in SE Qld: Range of habitats but generally requires presence of leaf and ground litter such as fallen branches and logs. Shelters under rocks, logs, sheets of bark etc during day.

General habits: Secretive, nocturnal.

Diet: Small skinks and other small reptiles, their eggs, and occasionally frogs.

Local distribution: Found throughout most periphery suburbs with relatively intact vegetative structure. An aggregation of nine individuals was observed under a sheet of bark at the Purga Nature Reserve, west of Ipswich.

Around the home: The Small-eyed Snake is infrequently encountered with snake relocators turning up only a small number every year. Could be typically associated with ground refugia such as timber piles, sheet iron, rock walls and heavy vegetation.

Photo Gallery

Please be patient while our image gallery loads. If viewing images in the lightbox viewer by clicking on an image, please allow a few second between each image as some images are large to retain their quality and size. Images are loaded straight from Dropbox, if blank spaces appear in gallery please click on the refresh icon 🔄 top left of gallery.All image are the property of the website or respected owner and can not be re-used without permisson. Copyright applies

Photo ID Photo ID

Did you know WildlifeQld offers a snake identification service. For our snake identification service simply use the upload form on We provide our Australian snake identification service free of charge and always welcome high quality images for potential inclusion on our website. This service is not just for Queensland snake identification but for all snake id across Australia.

The content on this page is intended only to provide a summary and general overview . It is not intended to be comprehensive nor does it constitute to be exact in every circumstances. We attempt to ensure that the Content is current but we do not guarantee its currency.