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Natural UAE

False cobra (Malpolon moilensis )

Also mildly toxic and harmless to man is the false cobra (Malpolon moilensis ). Thicker bodied than the sand snake it favours similar habitats and the same food species, but is able to handle and overcome slightly larger prey than the latter. If cornered or irritated it will spread the skin of its neck in a cobra-like fashion and produce a hissing noise. However, as its name suggests, it is not related to the cobra. It is pale brown in colour with dark spots along its back and sides, and with conspicuous red eyes bearing round black pupils. It grows to a length of approximately 150 cms and appears to occur in lower numbers than the sand snake, but it is also very widespread and has regularly been found sharing the burrows of spiny-tailed lizards. As with the sand snake, its contribution to mouse and rat control should not be underestimated.

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