What Do Cobras Eat?

Cobras are carnivorous snakes and feed on other snakes, lizards, small mammals, birds and bird eggs. A cobra can eat almost any type of snake, including other venomous snakes. Cobras survive well on land, in the trees, and in the water, considering any small animal its prey.

The king cobra is one of the most venomous snakes in the world. Living mainly in India, China, and Southeast Asia, these snakes emit a venom that could kill an elephant. When a cobra attacks prey, it first strikes and injects venom and then swallows the prey whole. It can take days for a cobra to fully digest a meal, which allows it to go weeks between meals.

The throat of the cobra has specially designed spikes that help it to digest its food. The spikes work to pierce the prey as it moves through the throat. When a cobra swallows an egg, the spike breaks apart the shell, allowing the yolk and egg white to slide through the rest of the digestive system, and the shell is regurgitated.

The cobra captures its prey by feeling vibrations on the ground and scoping out what's causing the vibrations. Although it has a dangerous reputation, a cobra will avoid confrontations with people unless it feels threatened.