Q:

How many types of cobras are there?

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Quick Answer

There are around 28 to 30 species of snakes commonly referred to as cobras. If any snake that has a hood and can raise its upper body is considered to be a cobra, then there may be as many as 270 species of cobra.

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Full Answer

The word "cobra" is commonly used to refer to any of a number of venomous snakes found in Africa and Southeast Asia. True cobras are members of the genus Naja, which includes the common Indian cobra. The largest of the cobras, the king cobra, is not a member of the genus Naja but is instead in its own genus, Ophiophagus. The spitting cobra is also not considered to be part of the genus Naja; it also has its own genus, Hemachatus.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How many species of cobras are there?

    A:

    The number of species that can formally be identified as cobras is somewhat open to interpretation. According to Live Science, only 28 species of snake belong to the genus Naja, the genus that scientists claim to be the genetically "true" cobra. However, when one adds all the other species that share traits and genetic kinship with the Naja, the number of cobra or related species reaches 270.

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  • Q:

    Where is the King Cobra situated within the food chain?

    A:

    King cobras are considered tertiary consumers and are often the apex predator of a food web. According to Blue Planet Biomes, their only predators are human beings, birds of prey and the mongoose.

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  • Q:

    What are some facts about king cobra babies?

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    Baby king cobras are born with venom that is as potent as the venom of their parents. Even before they're born, they benefit from parental care, which is unusual for many reptiles. Their mother, who actually builds a nest and lays between 18 and 50 eggs, guards the eggs until they hatch. The king cobra is the only snake known to build a nest.

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  • Q:

    Is an albino cobra poisonous?

    A:

    Albino cobras have poisonous venom and are just as dangerous as cobras with typical coloring. The bite of an albino cobra carries two types of venom: neurotoxic venom and cytotoxic venom. Neurotoxic venom infects the nervous system and causes respiratory failure while cytotoxic venom compromises cell integrity.

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