Coral Snakes in GURPS

Micrurus sp., Micruroides sp.

Coral snakes are elusive burrowing snakes found in South, Central, and southern North America. They spend most of their time buried under leaf litter or under ground. Although rarely seen, they have spectacular bands of colors around their bodies, typically red, yellow, and black.

Coral snakes are shy and retiring, and often will not bite even if grasped. However, when they do bite, their venom is very potent and can be life threatening.

Several well known coral snakes are described below. In addition, numerous other poorly documented coral snakes inhabit South America. These coral snakes do not always look like their North American relatives - although banded, the banding pattern can be different and going by identifying marks for North Amrican snakes may lead one to conclude that a deadly coral snake is harmless.

Several well known coral snakes are given below. The eastern coral snake is the default entry for the coral snakes on the table of the main elapid page.
Species Typical venom Size Range Habitat Notes
Potency Typical Maximum
Arizona coral snake, Micruroides euryxanthus potent? 50 g 200 g Arizona, New Mexico, Sinaloa.Rocky upland desert It is commonly said that the fangs of this species cannot break human skin, making it relatively harmless in spite of its deadly venom. Black head with bright colored bands circling the body with the pattern yellow-red-yellow-black repeating.
Eastern coral snake, Micrurus fulvius extreme 50 g 200 g Southeastern United States Forest, woodland, bushland, scrub. Black head bisected by yellow band, bright colored bands circle the body with the pattern yellow-red-yellow-black repeating. Antivenom was produced for this species from 1960 to 2010, but production has been discontinued. Several harmless colubrid snakes have colors mimicing the pattern of this snake within its range, but can be distinguished because the band pattern is yellow-black-red-black repeating.
Texas coral snake, Micrurus tener potent 50 g 200 g Southeastern United States, northeast and central Mexico. Forest and woodland, usually near water. Similar in appearance to eastern coral snake.
Central American coral snake, Micrurus nigrocinctus intense 50 g 200 g Mexico to Columbia, Caribbean.Forest and jungle. Similar in appearance to the eastern coral snake.

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