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As their name implies, these snakes are very slender, less than the circumference of a standard lead pencil. They are long, however, regularly measuring 75-115 cm. This one measured 68 cm. They are uniformly dark black. They have an orange nuchal band (rear scales of head). The venter has incomplete yellow or orange rings, usually not much more than spots, the length of the venter (photo #5). Usually some orange is visible on the tip of the tail. There may be 0-3 complete rings on some individuals. When agitated, as all coral snakes do, they tuck their head into coils of their body and wave their tail around in a tight curl. This along with the bright colors on the underside of the tail is to frighten away predators or enemies. They are non-aggressive but still venomous.
This individual was found on a trail on mission property in the Amazon rainforest of SE Ecuador (700 masl).
I removed this Coral to a place where he wouldn’t be immediately killed by the locals who believe the only good snake is a dead snake. I know of no one around here (besides myself) that has ever been bitten by a coral snake. The only exceptions were those who were intentionally handling them.