SMALL EYED SNAKE Cryptophis nigrescens (GUNTHER, 1862)
Found from Melbourne, Victoria along the east coast, ranges and near slopes of Victoria, NSW and Queensland to the tip of Cape York this dangerous snake is usually black, grey or dark brown in colour. Adults average 50 cm although some Queensland specimens which tend to grow larger than southern specimens may exceed a metre in length. A closely related species occurs in the coastal parts of the Northern Territory and adjacent parts of Western Australia.
The scalation is smooth with 15 mid body rows, 165-210 ventrals, single anal and 30-45 single subcaudals.
This wholly nocturnal snake has killed at least two people from its' bite, and although both deaths were the result of 'exceptional' circumstances this snake should be treated with care. Most bites however seem to result in little more than local swelling.
Most specimens of this nocturnal snake are caught during the day under cover, particularly in cold weather. When caught this snake will usually attempt to bite and may flatten out its' body whilst doing so. This snake has been found inside termite mounds, where it feeds on lizards that enter
the mounds. The Small Eyed Snake is essentially a skink and gecko feeder. Winter aggregations of this snake numbering up to nearly thirty individuals have been found around Sydney. It is believed that mating occurs in late autumn, winter and spring with 2-8 (average 5) live young being produced in late summer. Young measure 10-12 cm at birth.
The above was from the book Australian Reptiles and Frogs by Raymond Hoser and now available on a fantastic CD-Rom along with a vast amount of other information, papers and the like on reptiles, frogs and other wildlife.