Fun Egyptian Cobra Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Egyptian Cobra Facts For Kids

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The Egyptian cobra (Naja haje) is found in the subcontinent of Africa, all across north and south of the Sahara. These snakes are of a variety of brownish shades with a distinguishing mark of a tear-drop below the eyes. Egyptian cobras are believed to be the symbol of divine authority, royalty, deity, and sovereignty in ancient Egypt. It is one of the most poisonous snakes in Egypt and its venom is potent enough to kill a man in 15 minutes. The snake lays its eggs in termite mounds, animal burrows, or rock outcrops. It likes to stay near human habitation for hunting domestic fowl like chickens. This species of snake is not listed on the IUCN Red List. To learn more facts about body color, venom, reproduction, habitat, and other details regarding the Egyptian cobra, read this article.

If you like this article, you can also read our articles on king cobra facts and Egyptian false cobra facts.

Fun Egyptian Cobra Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Small mammals, birds, eggs, toads

What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?

Up to 20 lb (9 kg)

How long are they?

4.6 ft (1.4 m)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Brown, black

Skin Type

Dry scales

What were their main threats?


What is their conservation status?

Not listed

Where you'll find them?

Tropical Savanna


North Africa, Sub-saharan Africa









Egyptian Cobra Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an Egyptian cobra?

The Egyptian cobra is one of the largest cobra species found in the arid semi-desert regions of the African subcontinent.  

What class of animal does an Egyptian cobra belong to?

Egyptian cobras belong to the Reptilia class of the Animalia kingdom.

How many Egyptian cobras are there in the world?

No definite figure is available regarding the population size of this cobra species.

Where does an Egyptian cobra live?

Egyptian Cobras live in an extensive variety of habitats like arid semi-desert regions that contain patches of vegetation and water, dry to moist savannas, and steppes. They are also found in scrub vegetation and agricultural fields that are near water bodies. They also like to stay near human settlements for hunting domestic fowl like chickens.

What is an Egyptian cobra habitat?

Egyptian cobras range across most of North Africa north of the Sahara, across savannas of West Africa to the south of the Sahara, south to the Congo Basin, and east to Kenya and Tanzania.

Who does Egyptian cobra live with?

Egyptian cobras are solitary creatures and are seen in pairs only during the breeding season.

How long does an Egyptian cobra live?

The average lifespan of an Egyptian cobra in the wild is 20-30 years.

How do they reproduce?

Like all snakes, the Egyptian cobra is also oviparous in nature. The female snake lays a cluster of 20 eggs that measure around 2-2.5 in (5-6.4 cm) in length. These snakes make their nests in animal burrows, termite mounds, or rock outcrops. The incubation period lasts for about 55-60 days. The infant snakelings reach sexual maturity within 2-3 years.

What is their conservation status?

This species of snake is Not Listed in the IUCN Red List.

Egyptian Cobra Fun Facts

What does Egyptian cobra look like?

The Egyptian cobra is one of the largest cobra species originating in Sub-Saharan Africa. The snake has a large and depressed head which can be distinguished from the neck. As is the case in all cobra species, the long and cervical neck ribs are capable to expand and form a hood. The snout is rounded and broad. The color of the head and the hood is the most recognizable characteristic of this snake. Most of the snakes are different shades of brown with a dark or lighter shade of mottling and a distinguishing mark of tear-drop below the eyes. The body color of this snake is highly variable with Egyptian cobras from northwestern Africa being mostly black. They can be brown grayish, blue, grey,  yellow, brown, grayish blue, and blue grey, dark brown, plus dark brown or black. Some of the snakes are grey-brown or copper-red in color.

Egyptian cobra facts bring us joy.

How cute are they?

The Egyptian cobra (Naja haje) is one of the most venomous snakes in the world. It is very scary and not cute at all. However, baby cobras can be cute if you have the appetite for them.

How do they communicate?

The cobras do not usually tend to be very sociable creatures. They mainly sense vibrations on the ground, low-frequency tones, and other visual cues to communicate with each other. They tend to be quite territorial too.

How big is an Egyptian cobra?

Egyptian cobras are one of the largest species of African cobras. They have an average length of 4.6 ft (1.4 m). The size of the cobra depends mainly on geography and population. They can grow up to a maximum length of 8.5 ft (2.59 m).

How fast can an Egyptian cobra move?

The Egyptian cobra moves very fast while hunting prey or chasing victims. No definite information is available regarding the exact speed of the snake species.  

How much does an Egyptian cobra weigh?

The weight and size of these species of cobra depend on the geography and population of a region. Egyptian cobras can weigh up to 20 lb (9 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no specific name for the male and female snakes of this species.

What would you call a baby Egyptian cobra?

There is no specific name for a baby Egyptian cobra.

What do they eat?

Egyptian cobras are carnivorous in nature. They devour small mammals, birds, eggs, toads. They have a particular affinity toward eating toads.

Are they poisonous?

The Egyptian cobra (Naja haje) is one of the most venomous snake species in Africa.  The venom of this cobra is highly toxic and is a potent mixture of cytotoxins and neurotoxins. A bite of the cobra produces enough venom to kill a human being in 15 minutes, and an elephant in three hours. Deaths after envenomation in the victim are usually due to complete respiratory failure triggered by the effect of the neurotoxins present in the venom.

Would they make a good pet?

This snake contains extremely deadly venom which is potent enough to kill a human being within 15 minutes. Hence, they are not an ideal choice for pets. However, these snakes are seen in the reptile house or with snake charmers.

Did you know...

Ancient Egyptian legends call this species the snake of Egyptian Queen Cleopatra. It is widely believed that the Queen and her two servants committed suicide by being bitten by this snake. The venom of this snake had been used to experiment on prisoners and was found to be the least painful among different toxins. This species of reptile was smuggled into the Queen's chamber in a basket of figs. The snake was called Aspis whose common name was the Egyptian cobra, as believed by many historians. Cleopatra and her two servants committed suicide by being bitten by this cobra.

What does the cobra symbolize in ancient Egypt?

Egyptian cobras are believed to be a symbol for the power of pharaohs in ancient Egypt. It was the symbol of divine authority, royalty, deity, and sovereignty in ancient Egypt. For this reason, the golden mask of Tutankhamen contains an idol of the Egyptian cobra known as the Uraeus.

What is the most poisonous snake in Egypt?

The different venomous snakes found in Egypt are the snouted cobra, the forest cobra (Naja melanoleuca), the red spitting cobra, and the Egyptian cobra. Of these, the Egyptian cobra is the most dangerous that is found in Southern Egypt and north of the Sahara.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other reptiles from our puff adder facts and common death adder facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable egyptian cobra coloring pages.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

Moumita is a multilingual content writer and editor. She has a PostGraduate Diploma in sports management, which enhanced her sports journalism skills, as well as a degree in journalism and mass communication. She's good at writing about sports and sporting heroes. Moumita has worked with many soccer teams and produced match reports, and sports is her primary passion.

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