THE country’s largest King Cobra, Raja, has been measured, weighed and milked for its venom at its Australian Reptile Park home.
King Cobras are the largest venomous snakes in the world and Raja is believed to be the longest venomous snake residing in the country.
Head of Reptiles and Venom, Dan Rumsey, said Raja measured 4.1 metres, weighed 7.9kg and produced somewhere between 400 and 450 milligrams, which is 10 times the amount produced by a tiger snake.
“He’s an intimidating animal,” Mr Rumsey said. “Weighing reptiles is crucial in monitoring their health and a task where keepers need to show extreme care, especially when dealing with animals with this level of danger. In India, king cobras bites are known to have a 50 per cent mortality rate, making any interaction with the species extremely dangerous.” The King Cobra is infamous throughout its native region of South and South East Asia for its highly neurotoxic venom, but its population is declining across Indonesia due to deforestation and exploitation.