Boomslang and Green Mamba – Are They the Same or Different?

Difference between boomslang vs. green mamba

Many times we hear about these two snakes and think they are the same. And why not? Both of them look so similar and are easy to confuse with one another.

But are they the same?

No, not at all.

Although both species of snakes are beautifully green, slim, as well as deadly, the primary distinctions between green mambas and boomslangs lie in their size, appearance, color, and venom.

Green mambas are relatively larger, longer-bodied, heavier, and more fatal than boomslangs.

When you see a boomslang with its slender body and bright colors, it can be hard to believe they are as deadly as they really are.

Also, if you aren’t an expert on snakes, it’s easy to get confused; however, there are some very basic differences between the two species. And I will get into them right below in this article.

Green Mamba vs. Boomslang Snakes

Boomslangs and green mambas are both deadly snakes found mainly in Africa. They’re known for spending a lot of their time in trees.

The fact is out of the six types of venomous green snakes worldwide; these are the two that can kill you.

But that’s about their similarity.

Now let’s get into their differences, starting with size.

Size: Green Mambas are Larger than Boomslangs

One of the main differences between these two species is their size. Green mambas are larger than boomslangs.

The green mamba is a long, slender snake with surprisingly heavy weight for its size. It has a narrow head shaped like a coffin and smooth scales.

Green mambas have short fangs in front of their mouths and light green scales covering their darker green bodies. They typically grow to 4-7 feet long, with females often being larger than males.

A distinguishing characteristic of the boomslang is its huge eyes, which are positioned right on top of its head.

This snake species don’t reach very long, and the usual length ranges from 3.1 to 5.3 ft. It’s unusual to find a boomslang that is more than 5.3 ft tall. However, it happens occasionally.

Color: Green Mambas are Brighter than Boomslangs

Color is another way to distinguish between these two species. 

The green mamba is a gorgeous creature, varying in shades of light, bright green with some black keels on their heads.

In contrast, boomslangs come in many colors depending on their environment and can even be rust-red or black and yellow.

Oddly enough, the smaller they are, the more beautiful they appear with bright emerald eyes against twig-colored bodies and snow-white throats.

Venom: Boomslangs has Less Toxic Venom than Green Mambas

Bot the boomslang and green mamba are highly poisonous, but the green mamba’s poison is much more toxic.

The boomslang has hemotoxins in its venom, which significantly disrupt blood flow. If left untreated for a long period of time, the venom of boomslang can make the victim die.

The green mamba’s venom, on the other hand, contains cardiotoxins and neurotoxins, both of which are poisonous.

These poisons cause rapid respiratory paralysis because they target the brain and heart. If left untreated for a matter of minutes, their stings can result in death.

Diet: Both are Carnivorous and Eat Small Animals

The diet of both snakes is quite similar. They both feed on small animals such as lizards, frogs, birds, and rodents.

They kill their prey by biting it and then wrapping their bodies around it until it suffocates.

Green mambas are solitary by nature and enjoy spending time alone. As a result, they prefer to go hunting on their own.

Boomslangs eat the same foods as green mambas and are more lively and sociable than them.

Both of these snakes prefer to live on trees. They spend the majority of their time in the treetops, only coming down to search for food, water, or forage when necessary.

Though they don’t typically go after large animals, that doesn’t mean you should take these snakes lightly. Avoid them at all costs because if they get a hold of you, it can be devastating.

Distribution: Boomslangs are More Widespread than Green Mambas

The green mamba’s distribution is more limited than the boomslang, which you can find throughout Africa.

Depending on the species of green mamba you want to see, they either reside in woodlands and tropical rain forests of West Africa or along coasts East African coastlines in bushlands and woodlands.

Mating: Green Mambas Usually are Less Loyal

Green mambas have a lot of partners; they are not like some creatures who are loyal to just one. When it’s time for mating, a male green mamba will track down his lady by following her scent trail.

Females generally have a large number of males courting them. Thus, the males must compete with one another to determine who gets to mate with the lady.

The female green mamba lays between four and seventeen eggs that take ten weeks to twelve weeks to hatch.

Like the green mamba, the boomslang engages in the same mating ritual as the green mamba, but females lay around eight to twenty-seven eggs with soft shells about the size of a ping pong ball.

The eggs take approximately eight weeks to fourteen weeks to hatch.

The Conclusion: Which is more dangerous of the two?

Generally, the green mamba is a more dangerous snake than the boomslang because its venom is more toxic.

However, the boomslang is more widespread, so you’re more likely to come across it.

Regardless, both snakes are dangerous and should be avoided if possible.

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