Yellow-bellied sea snake
Description: Upper part of body is black or dark brown and lower part is bright yellow.
Characteristics: A highly venomous snake belonging to the cobra family. This snake is truly of the pelagic species—it never leaves the water to come to shore. It has an oarlike tail to aid its swimming. This species is quick to defend itself. Sea snakes do not really strike, but deliberately turn and bite if molested. A small amount of their neurotoxic venom can cause death.
Length: Average 0.7 meter (2 feet), maximum 1.1 meters (3 1/2 feet).
Distribution: Throughout the Pacific Ocean from many of the Pacific islands to Hawaii and to the coast of Central and South America (Figure E-49).
Figure E-49. Yellow-Bellied Sea Snake Habitat