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King Cobra And Reticulated Python Battle Caught On Video

Reticulated pythons are common prey items of the king cobra

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A fight between a king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) and a reticulated python (Python reticulatus) occurred on the campus of Nanyang Technological University in Singapore August 27 and it was captured on video and in stills by photographer Abhishek Ambede.


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The encounter between the two reptiles brought a flurry of questions on social media where the footage was first published. The images are very graphic, showing the reticulated python fighting for its life as well as the king cobra, which was fighting to breathe due to the constriction it was experiencing from the much smaller snake.

Facebook posts on the Nanyang Technological University Graduate Student Council page said that the python was bitten by the cobra, which may explain the snake’s lethargic demeanor after it suddenly released its grip on the cobra. After the release, the cobra disappeared into the bushes while the retic remained in the gutter on the side of the road until NTU Pest Control came and removed the snake. It is said the snake was released in the nearby forest but the prognosis won’t be good if it indeed was bitten. The king cobra was also later captured and sent to a Singapore zoo. 

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Both the reticulated python and the king cobra are native to Singapore, with the python a common prey item of the cobra. 


John B. Virata keeps a western hognose snake, a ball python, two corn snakes, a king snake, and two leopard geckos. His first snake, a California kingsnake, was purchased for $5. His first pet reptile was a green anole that arrived in a small box via mail order. Follow him on Twitter @johnvirata