Fun King Cobras Facts For Kids

Divya Raghav
Oct 21, 2022 By Divya Raghav
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Natalie Rayworth
One of the best king cobra facts is that they are the most dangerous and also the longest venomous snake

If the idea of snake excites your child and makes them question their very existence, then this is the right place to be. This section talks about the very well-known, dangerous, and venomous category of snakes called the king cobras.

Belonging to the Elapidae family of snakes, king cobras are listed among the deadliest snake categories worldwide. Their venom is so strong that it hardly takes minutes to make a human drop dead.

Although, ironically, these cobras tend to be quite shy and avoid human contact. Continue reading the pointers below to uncover various truths about this particular snake, the king cobra.

If you like reading these facts, you can also check our facts on sea snakes or king snakes.

King Cobras Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a king cobra?

A king cobra belongs to the most dangerous snake in the world. The cobra venom is known to be one of the most deadliest snake venom in the world.

What class of animal does a king cobras belong to?

King cobras (venomous snakes) belong to the Reptilia class of animals. This particular type of snake has quite a venomous bite and can kill in seconds, but not all reptiles are the same.

How many king cobras are there in the world?

The tropical rain forests are home to almost 270 species of venomous snakes like the Egyptian cobra, the spitting cobra, the Indian cobra, or the black cobra. There are approximately 200 to 270 kinds of king cobra present under the family Elapidae (after conservation).

Where does a king cobra live?

A king cobra can survive in various climatic conditions. Still, if talking about preference, then this particular variety of the Animalia kingdom prefers to stay put in the tropical rainforest, on bamboo thickets, the wetlands, and the woods as well.

They prefer the dense and highly populated forests and the mangrove swamps. King cobras are also primarily found in countries like China, India, Burma, the Philippines, and Malaysia.

What is a king cobra's habitat?

This particular species of cobra can be vastly found in China, India, Burma, the Philippines, and Malaysia. The king cobra habitat consists of densely populated rain forests and bamboo thickets.

King cobras prefer living in forests that are in the close vicinity of streams or rivers. They can also be spotted in the extremely hot tropical areas of Africa, Australia, and United States too.

Who do king cobras live with?

Although king cobra have a perilous and strong reputation, they prefer to stay only with their group, and a group of cobras is called a quiver. Based on their aggressive behavior and lethal venom, people generally expect things to be otherwise (these are among the most dangerous and venomous snakes known in the world).

These cobras are also pretty shy in nature and try to avoid any possible form of human contact whatsoever.

How long does a king cobra live?

The average lifespan of a king cobra is known to be 20 years.

How do they reproduce?

Once the breeding season begins, it can last a little longer than usual, since the female cobras tend to mate with quite a lot of male cobras in an attempt to get the best infant. The process of breeding in cobras begins when the male species tries to win over the female cobras by performing various dances.

That marks the very beginning of the first step, which is mating with the victor or the chosen male.

After the mating, the eggs are laid out.

The average litter size of a cobra is approximately 14 to 16 eggs at a time. Unlike the other species, a cobra male builds a nest for the female to lay her legs; he builds it and stays out to protect them from the worst.

The females sit around warming up the eggs for almost 80 days and leave right before the eggs are about to hatch. It is an astonishing fact that cobra hatchlings are born independently, and they have the capability to spread their hood and bite right after their birth (they usually tend to contain venom).

After five to six years of maturing, the juveniles are finally ready to repeat the whole cycle all over again.

What is their conservation status?

King cobras, as mentioned above, are generally found in tropical forests all around the globe. According to the present statistics, the number of the species left behind totals between 270 to 280.

The very species of king cobra has been at great risk of extinction for quite a few years. The IUCN has also listed them as Vulnerable to extinction on the conservation charts.

There are quite a few reasons for this, including deforestation, the steep rise in poaching, hunting and all of this along with the loss of habitat.

Mongooses are the biggest threat, in terms of being a king cobra predator. King cobras are also used for skincare products, food, and medicinal purposes, which is why they are poached and hunted at such a high rate.

The sadder part is that despite all of these warnings and steps, IUCN has noticed no significant rise in its population and cannot change their status to the Least Concern.

King Cobra Fun Fact

As peculiar as this species of cobra is, their name, king cobra, also has quite a strange origin.

The reason behind this peculiar yet and exciting name is quite simple and to the point. These cobras are referred to as king cobras as they tend to be superior to the other species to cobras, and they even tend to rule over them.

Their venom is so strong that they are capable of killing their prey and other fellow cobras and assert dominance, making them quite superior to the other snakes and hence earned the name king cobra.

What do King Cobras look like?

These cobras tend to switch their body color as they transit from birth to adulthood. They are blessed with beautiful bright colors like green, black, brown, and yellow.

Different parts of their body are darker and in different shades of colors. The throat tends to be wrapped in bright yellow or cream, whereas the lower body is painted in a uniform ornamental shade.

Juveniles, on the other hand, play around with colors like white crossbars, yellow, or jet black. The combination of these colors, along with their strong venom and size, gives them a fiercely aggressive look overall.

King cobra's appearance and reputation make them look all the more aggressive

How cute are they?

They are dangerous, not cute. Even though they might look cute to some, their aggressiveness makes them appear as less cute to most people. The young ones can look adorable but do not let their cuteness fool you. The young ones are a more dangerous snake as their venom tends to be stronger.

How do they communicate?

The two primary ways of communication is either by hissing (they tend to hiss quieter than a dog's growl) or by wrestling (males tend to do this in order to impress their rival; making the opponent's head touch the ground is a sign of victory).

Cobras are also blessed with great eyesight, blessing their defense as well as making them even stronger in combat.

How big is a king cobra?

The average length of a king cobra can be up to 224 in (5.71 m), however its rare that they get to this length. Talking about the weight, they tend to scale up to 13.2 lb (6 kg). And their fangs can be up to as long as 0.5 in (1.2 cm) in length.

How fast can a king cobra move?

King cobras are known to be quite a fast animal, based on their hunting and escaping speed. These snakes also tend to be quiet when catching their prey which compliments their reflexes and their speed.

How much does a king cobra weigh?

An average king cobra weight is 13 lb (6 kg) generally, however, the heaviest king cobra ever weighed was 26 lb (12 kg). How fast they are also is relates to their weight.

What are their male and female names of the species?

Female and male king cobras have the same name. There is no specific name given to the female or the male species.

What would you call a baby king cobra?

There is no specified name for a baby king cobra, but a king cobra can also be called Hamadryad.

What do they eat?

King cobras are known to be hardcore carnivores hence they generally stick to feeding on various cold-blooded animals. The king cobra diet consists of its prey, which are rats, mice, dhamans (rat snakes), other snakes such as pythons and even small cobras.

They tend to kill and feed on non-poisonous and harmless species of snakes ranging up to 118 in (3 m) in size as a part of their diet. These snakes also eat up the eggs of king cobra prey.

Are they poisonous?

The king cobra venom is one of the most dangerous ones worldwide. Their bite can kill a human being in 15 to 20 mins. The king cobra bite is known to adversely affect the nervous system along with the respiratory tract which in turn causes the respiratory system to malfunction, leading to a major cardiac arrest and death.

Would they make a good pet?

King cobras are quite ironic to their reputation, although they are quite known for their deadly nature, they are quite shy animals and avoid any kind of human contact. This particular class of animals is not up for petting. This type of venomous snake must be left alone in their natural habitat.

Did you know...

One painful fact about snake charming is that it is performed by exhausted cobras who are often in a great deal of pain. Although cobras are not technically deaf, they can only feel the vibrations and not hear the voices or the noise therefore the cobras likely won't be enjoying the music.

Female cobras leave their eggs right before they hatch. After this, the male cobras look after the eggs.

These snakes are known to spread their hood right before they bite. Their hood gives them quite a dominating look. This hood is also the reason behind their name being king cobra.

Different Types Of Cobras

It is a well known yet very confusing fact that king cobras are not considered as 'true cobras', instead, they have their own genus called the Ophiophagus (the snakes belonging to this particular genus, for instance, the king cobra, have comparatively quite a large head and a narrow body).

The various kinds and types of cobras can be listed down as the spitting cobra, the spectacled cobra, the Andaman cobra, the Central Asia cobra along with many undiscovered types of cobras.

Are King Cobras Endangered?

The very species of king cobra has been at great risk of extinction for quite a few years. The IUCN has also listed them as Vulnerable to Extinction.

There are quite a few reasons for this including, the deforestation, poaching, hunting and loss of habitat. King cobras are also used for skincare products, food, and medicinal purposes, which can explain the rise in poaching and hunting.

King cobras, as mentioned above are generally found in the tropical forests all around the globe but according to present statistics the number of king cobras can total up to between 270 and 280.

These snakes are categorized as among the most dangerous snakes of all time, and the conservation of these snakes is primary.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other reptiles including copperhead snakes or caiman lizards.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our King cobra coloring pages.

We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Divya Raghav

Bachelor of Commerce specializing in Accounting and Finance, Master of Business Administration

Divya Raghav picture

Divya RaghavBachelor of Commerce specializing in Accounting and Finance, Master of Business Administration

With a diverse range of experience in finance, administration, and operations, Divya is a diligent worker known for her attention to detail. Born and raised in Bangalore, she completed her Bachelor's in Commerce from Christ University and is now pursuing an MBA at Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Bangalore. Along with her professional pursuits, Divya has a passion for baking, dancing, and writing content. She is also an avid animal lover who dedicates her time to volunteering for animal welfare causes.

Read full bio >