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Cobra, forest.jpg

The forest cobra (Naja melanoleuca), also commonly called the black cobra and the black and white-lipped cobra, is a species of venomous snake in the family Elapidae. The species is native to Africa, mostly the central and western parts of the continent. It is the largest true cobra species with a total length (including tail) of up to 3.1 meters (10 feet). Although it prefers lowland forest and moist savanna habitats, this cobra is highly adaptable and can be found in drier climates within its geographical range. It is a very capable swimmer and is often considered to be semi-aquatic. The forest cobra is a generalist in its feeding habits, having a highly varied diet: anything from large insects to small mammals and other reptiles. This species is alert, nervous and is considered to be a very dangerous snake. When cornered or molested, it will assume the typical cobra warning posture by raising its fore body off the ground, spreading a narrow hood, and hissing loudly. Bites to humans are less common than from other African cobras due to various factors, though a bite from this species is a life-threatening emergency.

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