15 Types of Blue Snakes With Pictures

Blue Snakes

When you think of snakes, you probably don’t think of an entirely teal pit viper!

You may be surprised to learn that blue snakes are real.

These snakes are some of the rarest and most uniquely colored animals on the planet. It is more common for snakes to be brown, black, white, tan or red.

While we couldn’t fit everyone on this list, we have rounded up 15 of the most beautiful and interesting species to show you…

Types of Blue Snakes

There are an estimated 50 species of blue snakes.

Some families like Colubridae or Viperidae have lots of azure, cobalt and navy species, while others don’t have any.

These snakes can be found all over the world, but one thing they all have in common is their beautiful shades of blue.

If a snake is blue there is usually a good reason why.

For animals, blue is extremely difficult and energy intensive to produce. This is because instead of being produced by a pigment, it has to be produced by specific skin structures.

Many reptiles don’t want to waste the energy needed to produce blue, which is why it is so rare to see.

Snakes are usually blue for one of three reasons: reproduction, camouflage or warning.

Some species use bright colors to attract a mate, while others may use a darker navy as camouflage in their environments. Other snakes that are highly venomous may use bright cobalt to indicate they are dangerous.

Snake Color Appearance Range
Barons Green Racer Light sky blue with yellow and green Nearly 6 feet long, with sky blue backs and pale yellowish green sides, underbellies and chins South America
Blue Phase Common Tree Snake Steely bluish gray with iridescent green and blue Nearly 4 feet in length with steely blue backs Australia
Blue Racer Light blue-gray with cream and dark gray 36-60 inches long with light solid bluish gray bodies, cream-colored chins and dark gray bands across their eyes Eastern North America
Blue-Striped Garter Bluish black and turquoise 22 inches long, dark blue body with turquoise stripes, chin and lips Eastern North America
Blue-lipped Sea Krait Black and cerulean blue 36–42 inches long with alternating black and blue bands Western Pacific and Indian Oceans
California Red-Sided Garter Red, dark blue and turquoise 22–39 inches with red checkered sides and turquoise stripes California
Eyelash Viper Bright teal with hints of black or brown Small, with a solid teal body and the occasional black or brown marking Central and South America
High Blue Green Tree Python Pale blue with green and yellow 5 feet long, pale blue or greenish-blue bodies with some yellow patterning Australia, New Guinea and Indonesia
Indigo Snake Dark indigo blue and brownish orange Thick dark indigo bodies with an orange chin and stripes Southeastern North America
Malabar Pit Viper Teal, brown, black and white Teal base color with brown, black and white patterning on their backs and head India
Malayan Coral Snake Dark bluish black, red and cyan Bluish black body with bright cyan blue stripes and a red head and tail Southeast Asia
Rock Rattlesnake Light gray-blue A small, pale gray body with black irregular bands Southern United States and Mexico
Side-Striped Palm Pit Viper Greenish blue and yellow Bright greenish blue bodies with yellow stripes on their sides Panama and Costa Rica
Vietnamese Blue Beauty Snake Pale grayish blue, sapphire, black and white 6-7 feet long, pale blue with black and white patterning on the lower half of their bodies Eastern and Southeastern Asia
White-Lipped Island Pit Viper Teal jewel toned blue 24-32 inches long with solid sky blue or teal bodies Sunda Islands Indonesia

One thing that may be confusing is the difference between being blue in color and being “in blue”.

A snake “in blue” is one that is about to shed, regardless of body color.

This is because the eyes of a shedding snake will look clouded over and slightly grayish-blue in color.

Blue Snakes

1. White-Lipped Island Pit Viper

White-Lipped Island Pit Viper

White-lipped island pit vipers (Trimeresurus insularis) can range from a light, almost sky-blue color to a deep jewel toned bluish green.

Depending on their range, they are known to have green, yellow and blue populations.

This snake has quite a bit of color variation.

The Sunda island pit viper is probably one of the most vivid blue venomous snakes on this list. This species is extremely venomous and found in Indonesia.

2. Blue Phase Common Tree Snake

Blue phase common tree snakes (Dendrelaphis punctulatus) are a stunning grayish blue.

Common tree snakes are an Australian species that are usually green or brown in color.

There is a very rare, genetic mutation that produces the blue phase common tree snake.

This mutation turns these green snakes into a steely blue gray with a bright blue iridescent belly.

Finding the blue phase in the wild is extremely rare, but their beautiful coloration makes them stand out.

3. Blue Racer

Blue Racer

Blue racer snakes (Coluber constrictor foxii) are a bluish gray species with a cream-colored chin and dark gray banding across their eyes. They also have blushings of lighter blue on the side of their bodies, near their cream underbelly.

Their combination of blue hues is stunning and makes them one of the most beautiful of any North American species.

The blue racer is relatively common and easy to find in the wild and can be found in Eastern North America.

4. Barons Green Racer

Barons Green Racer

Barons green racers (Philodryas baroni) are known for their bright green bodies and elongated “nose”.

Despite the name, these snakes aren’t always green. They sometimes have a bluish tint to their scales which results in a beautiful body color.

This species is found in South America and is a member of the Colubridae family.

Other species from the Colubridae family include the Indigo Snake and Blue Racer.

5. High Blue Green Tree Python

High Blue Green Tree Python

Green tree pythons are usually green, but in this case, there is a specific morph called the High Blue.

This extremely rare morph gives a Python a solid teal body.

High blue green tree pythons (Morelia viridis) are a stunning teal with the occasional patch of green.

Native to the islands around Australia, Indonesia and New Guinea, many consider this teal snake the world’s most expensive with a price tag of $1.8 million.

6. Malabar Pit Viper

Malabar Pit Viper

Malabar pit vipers (Craspedocephalus malabaricus) have a bright greenish blue underbelly and sides. Their greenish sides are contrasted by a brown and black speckled pattern on their dorsal side and head.

Also known as the Malabar rock pit viper, they are native to India and highly venomous.

This snake has many possible colors, including brown, yellow, green and, most interestingly, blue.

7. Side-Striped Palm Pit Viper

Side-Striped Palm Pit Viper

The side-striped is another venomous pit viper that can be blue.

Side-striped palm pit vipers (Bothriechis lateralis) tend to become bluer as they age. They are usually solid teal with two yellow horizontal stripes running the length of their bodies.

This species can also have a bluish gray stripe behind their eyes.

Juveniles are greenish and have more yellow banding on their bodies. This yellow banding usually disappears as they become adults.

8. Vietnamese Blue Beauty Snake

Vietnamese Blue Beauty Snake

Vietnamese blue beauty snakes (Orthriophis taeniurus callicyanous) are a species of Asian rat snake known for their beauty.

These rat snakes are a complex pattern of muted blue, gray and black with spots, stripes and mottling.

Their pattern fades into a solid gray head with a very distinct black stripe across each of their eyes. This stripe almost makes them look like they are wearing eyeshadow.

These snakes are no doubt one of the most beautiful, small blue snakes.

9. Blue Malayan Coral Snake

Blue Malayan coral snakes (Calliophis bivirgatus) are a dark bluish-black with a bright red head and tail.

These snakes also have two blue stripes running down the length of their bodies from head to tail.

This species has an extremely interesting color pattern that is more than just blue. The mix of blood red, dark blue and vibrant turquoise gives them a very unique look.

These venomous snakes are found in southeast Asia and are also called the blue coral snake.

10. Rock Rattlesnake

Rock rattlesnakes (Crotalus lepidus) are more subtle in color than the other species on this list.

They are normally gray with distinct black bands on their bodies, but some populations have blue undertones.

Their lighter grayish blue color has led to them also being called the Blue Rattlesnake.

Rock rattlesnakes are venomous and native to North America.

11. Blue-Lipped Sea Krait

Blue-lipped Sea Krait

Blue-lipped sea kraits (Laticauda laticaudata) are named for their beautiful black and blue banding.

Their blue bands are very vivid and can range from Cobalt to Cerulean in color.

These beautiful snakes are entirely aquatic and are found in the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans.

Similar to other sea snakes, they are some of the most venomous snakes on the planet.

12. Indigo Snake

Indigo Snake

Indigo snakes (Drymarchon couperi) are a very dark blue snake.

These snakes can almost look black at first glance. Some individuals are entirely solid blue, while others have a lighter orange chin with dark bluish black stripes on their lips.

The Eastern Indigo snake is found in North America, but you are unlikely to stumble upon one in the wild. They are listed as threatened in the wild.

While you may not come across an indigo snake in the wild very often, they are considered the longest native snake in the United States and can reach lengths up to 8 feet.

13. Blue-Striped Garter Snake

Blue Striped Garter

Blue-striped garter snakes (Thamnophis sirtalis similis) are common across North America.

This blue snake can be identified by its dark grayish-black body and bright blue stripes running down the sides.

These bright stripes continue up onto their face and can be seen on their chin and lips.

The blue-striped garter snake is one of the smaller blue snakes on this list, adults usually only grow to 22 inches.

14. California Red-Sided Garter

California Red-Sided Garter

California red-sided garters (Thamnophis sirtalis infernalis) are a dark bluish black with a bright red head, red checkered pattern and a turquoise blue dorsal stripe.

This subspecies of garter snake is found only in California.

They are popular pet snakes as they are non-venomous, easy to keep and beautiful.

15. Eyelash Viper

Eyelash vipers (Bothriechis schlegelii) are normally yellow, white, green, pink, red, brown and sometimes blue.

Blue eyelash vipers are solid cerulean blue, though some have a black or brown speckling.

Eyelash vipers are known for their unique eye scales, giving them the look of “eyelashes”!

These venomous snakes normally only reach between 22-35 inches long and are found in Central and South America.

Summary

Many people don’t know that there are more than 15 different types of blue snakes!

These snakes cover a wide variety of ranges, but one thing they all have in common is their beautiful shades of indigo, navy and turquoise.

These snakes likely use their coloration for camouflage or warning.

While blue isn’t a particularly common color, you may have seen some of the most famous blue species, like the white-lipped island pit viper.

If you live in the US, you may have also seen the deep navy-blue indigo snake.

It is hard to deny that these snakes and their varying shades of blue are extraordinarily beautiful.

Learn More About Blue Animals

About Nigel Robert

Nigel Robert Nigel is the managing editor at More Reptiles. He is a lifelong reptile lover, biologist and wildlife consultant who brings a decade of experience working in reptile conservation and consultancy. He joined our team in 2020 and when he’s not reviewing reptile care sheets, he’s out looking for reptiles in the wild!

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