Up to 120cm long. Body is roughly cylindrical and of average girth. Eyes are large. Has an olive-brown background coloration with various black streaks and blotches and a row of small yellow or white dots down each side. Two black streaks come down and back from the eye. Juveniles have a characteristic yellow mark on their neck that fades with age.
In or near marshes, ponds, or rice patties, sometimes in the middle of urban areas. The Yellow-spotted Keelback is a a strong swimmer.