Are there many Black Mambas in the park? If so how dangerous are they?
Snakes - Black Mamba
Its actually the opposite, Green Mambas are found in KZN (their preferred habitat being evergreen lowland forest and moist savanna), you will also find them along the Mozambique coast and the Zimbabwe eastern highlands.
Black Mamba's are more widespread and are found in KZN, South Africa's lowveld and bushveld savanna (which would include Nkorho), Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia (excluding the deserts).
The Black Mamba's average length is between 2.4 and 3m, but may reach 4.5m, while the Green Mamba average 1.8m in length and seldom grow longer than 2.5m.
Source: Complete Guide to the Snakes of Southen Africa - Johan Marais (Published by Struik) ISBN 1 86872 933 8
Black Mambas are also found in Namibia - a guard found one and killed it on a farm I was staying on. It was laid out on the ground and the squirrels surrounded it 'thumping' the ground hard to try and scare it off.
We also found a dead Puff Adder just outside the farm on the road side.
There is a huge difference in sizes between the two snakes.
I hope you find this interesting.
Thank you. I was told that only Green Mambas lived in this area and that the black was only found in Kwa Zulu Natal. I appreciate you clearing this up.
Certainly this species of snake is endemic to the region and will occur, although sighting are likely to be quite low.
Snake populations are impossible to count, but this species is both long lived and territorial, thus certain individuals may become known to a defined geographical area.
In terms of toxicity, this is Southern Africa's most dangerous snake who bites is potently neurotoxic and untreated bites are usually fatal. Two points here, incidents of snake bite in general are very rare, incidents of mamba snake bite are exceptionally rare. Treated victims of mamba snake bite invariably recover, although high quatities of anti-venom is required. Anti-venom is also available.
Contrary to popular myth, a mamba bite does not leave you minutes to live unless treated immediately, and while professional medical care must be sought as rapidly as possible, victims receiving treatment within 10 hours, generally have an excellent prognosis.
For more information on the treatment of snake bite envenomation, the WildifeCampus Component called" First Aid for Snake Bite" can be found in our Game Ranging Course.