Africa’s most feared snake, the elusive Black Mamba, holds the record for being the world’s longest venomous snake, averaging around 10 feet in length, and sometimes growing to lengths of 15 feet. It is as well the fastest snake in the world, capable of moving at 10 - 12 mph (16–20 km/h). The Black Mamba is not named for the color of its body, which is usually a shade of grey. But for the highly pigmented interior of its mouth, which it shows at a threat display.
Many people fear that the black mamba will actually chase and attack humans unprovoked, and there are evidences to support such concerns. Regardless, attacks on humans are surprisingly rare, more people die in Africa due to bites from cobras and other venomous snakes such as the puff adder. Black Mambas feed meanly on small mammal, reptiles and birds but it has been observed, that snakes sometimes prey on animals that are to large to devour. In this video I filmed how a hungry black mamba can across a dead lion. Without any hesitation, the mamba attacked the lifeless body of the lion, striking twice before trying to swallow the enormous carcass.
Black Mambas are territorial snakes which will normally retreat from danger. However, many mambas tend to become highly aggressive if they feel threatened, especially if the threat is standing between the snake and its lair. When in its aggressive mode, the black mamba will rear its head as high as possible, even sometimes being able to look directly into the eyes of an averaged size human depending on the snake’s size. The reptile will arch its back and advance rapidly while balanced on the rear third of its body, jaw open to reveal the inky black inside of its mouth, while hissing aggressively. Its bite delivers about 100 mg of neurotoxic venom but only 10 to 15 mg is needed to kill and human adult.