- Anacondas aren’t venomous – instead, they constrict their prey to disable it.
- The largest type is the massive green or giant anaconda, averaging 20 ft long and 200-300 pounds.
- Anacondas are native to South America but have appeared in the Everglades of Florida.
Whether they make an appearance on the silver screen or on the news, anacondas are famously scary reptiles. They’re excessively long, thick snakes with eyes situated on the top of their head to help them scope out prey while remaining underwater. These snakes are known for being constrictors rather than venomous snakes.
They strike from the depths and choke the life out of their prey, taking down deer, crocodiles, and more. Today, we’re going to discover the biggest anaconda ever and show you why that snake was truly a modern-day mythological creature!
How Big Was the Largest Giant Anaconda?
Unfortunately, it either died in the controlled explosion after which they found the snake or by construction workers after it emerged. Either way, humans killed the biggest anaconda ever found.
Where Do Anacondas Live?
Anacondas are a group of large snakes found in South America. These powerful and fearsome predators are well adapted to the tropical environments in which they live and are known for their ability to squeeze and overpower their prey.
Here’s a closer look at where you can find anacondas in the wild:
- Amazon Basin: Anacondas are found throughout the Amazon Basin, which encompasses much of the Amazon Rainforest in South America. This region is known for its high rainfall, lush vegetation, and diverse array of animal species.
- Rivers and Swamps: Anacondas are primarily aquatic animals, and are often found in slow-moving rivers, swamps, and marshes. They are able to hold their breath for up to 10 minutes underwater, making them well-adapted to live in these watery habitats.
- Rainforests: In addition to their aquatic habitats, anacondas are also found in the dense, humid rainforests that make up much of the Amazon Basin. Here they hunt on land and in the trees, taking advantage of the abundant prey that lives in these habitats.
- Other South American Countries: In addition to being found in Brazil, anacondas are also found in other South American countries, including Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Guyana.
Whether you’re a snake enthusiast, or simply fascinated by these powerful predators, the anaconda is sure to be a highlight of any visit to the Amazon Basin.
They weren’t able to properly measure or record the biggest anaconda to lend credence to the reported size. Although a video of the snake exists, we all know that videos can be altered and that perspectives can be confusing.
There have been other reports of supposed record-breaking anacondas without proper citations or proof. One claim suggests that the longest, heaviest snake ever found was 27.7 feet long, had a girth of 3 feet, and weighed over 500 lbs.
The chances are high that people have never really captured or measured the largest anaconda. When you consider that people merely accidentally stumbled upon the biggest anaconda found in Brazil, it’s hard to say what lurks beneath the waters or in burrows across the vast Amazon River basin.
How Large Are Most Anacondas?
Now that we have an idea of how large anacondas can get, we should take a look at the size of the average member of the species. The largest of all these variants is the green anaconda. The average green anaconda can reach about 20 feet in length and weigh 200-300 lbs.
Green anacondas can live over 10 years in the wild and up to 30 in captivity. They spend most of their lives alone except during mating season – between April and May.
Several other species exist, including the yellow, Bolivian, and darkly-spotted anaconda. The female anacondas are larger than the males in most cases. As their names suggest, these different species vary in color, and they also vary in size.
The biggest anacondas are hard to spot because they live in remote areas. The average size that has been found is much smaller than the largest one ever seen. Either the massive variants are exceedingly rare, or they are just good at staying away from humans.
Where Do Anacondas Live?
Anacondas are from South America. Specifically, they thrive in the lands east of the Andes mountains in places like Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Bolivia. These countries are common homes for these snakes, but they can be found in other places, too.
After all, anacondas are water boas, and they enjoy spending a lot of their time in the vast number of waterways that run throughout South America. They prefer to live in tropical rainforests, and they enjoy living in and around water. That means you can find them in slow-moving waters like rivers and streams.
When they’re not in the water, they will frequently hide in tall vegetation that allows them to ambush prey. Moreover, they enjoy staying out of sight of other predators seeking to make a meal of them.
As we said, these snakes are native to South America, but that is not the only place in which they can be found. In fact, green anacondas have made their way to the United States. They are one of the many invasive species that have come to the U.S., particularly in the Florida Everglades.
Invasive Species Problem
Only a few of them have been found in the U.S. Yet, they could become like the Burmese python, an uncontrollable invasive species. Massive snakes have no natural predators in this area, so they can flourish with few threats to them. Human intervention is currently the only means of keeping these creatures in check.
These invasive reptiles pose a significant threat to the natural habitat of the Everglades. So the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has an invasive species task force to specifically address the problem.
The state now requires individuals who own these reptiles as pets to implant microchips in them and pay for a permit. Additionally, in 2012, the U.S. Department of the Interior outlawed the import of the yellow anaconda and several python species.
Are Anacondas Venomous or Dangerous?
Anacondas are not venomous snakes, but they are still very dangerous. The average anaconda can reach sizes of 20 feet in length and weighs several hundred pounds. They are capable of taking down large creatures like deer and even jaguars in some cases.
Their method of attack isn’t unique, but it’s deadly. They are constrictors that belong to the boa family. These creatures often wait just below the water with the topmost portion of their heads sticking out. When they see the right type of prey come by, they lunge at them. The snakes use their teeth to hold them and begin the process of wrapping around them.
Once they have quelled the prey’s attempts at escape, they will constrict tighter and tighter until the animal is dead.
Constriction is deadly on multiple levels, either causing strangulation or organ failure in their prey. Either way, the anaconda is hard to fend off, and the dead prey is swallowed whole.
Are Any Snakes Longer Than the Anaconda?
The green anaconda is often cited as the largest snake in the world because of its incredible length and weight. However, the record for the longest snake that was held in captivity and certified by a third party was a reticulated python.
Not only do they grow longer than anacondas on average, but they have reached verified lengths of over 25 feet. Furthermore, it’s believed that the maximum length of the reticulated python is 33 feet or longer.
Depending on whether we collectively believe the reports about the size of the green anacondas mentioned in this article, the reticulated python might be a longer snake species. However, they are far thinner and lighter than most anacondas.
The anaconda is a massive reptile that could be the next major invasive snake species in the United States. Their presence in the vast wetlands of the Florida Everglades, a place bereft of predators, could lead to new, record-breaking snakes being discovered around the world.
The photo featured at the top of this post is ©
Discover the "Monster" Snake 5X Bigger than an Anaconda
Every day A-Z Animals sends out some of the most incredible facts in the world from our free newsletter. Want to discover the 10 most beautiful snakes in the world, a "snake island" where you're never more than 3 feet from danger, or a "monster" snake 5X larger than an anaconda? Then sign up right now and you'll start receiving our daily newsletter absolutely free.
Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.