Titanoboa vs Anaconda: What Are the Differences?

Written by August Buck
Updated: October 7, 2022
Image Credit Mark_Kostich/Shutterstock.com
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Think You Know Snakes?

Have you ever wanted to compare and contrast two of the largest snakes that ever lived, namely the titanoboa vs anaconda? Both of these beings are monstrous in their own ways, even though one of them is extinct. However, the titanoboa and the anaconda are legends- what might their differences and similarities be?

In this article, we will address the differences between these two snakes. These differences will include their sizes, appearances, habitat preferences, and more. Let’s get started and learn about these giant reptiles now!

Comparing Titanoboa vs Anaconda

titanoboa vs anaconda
Titanoboas are significantly larger than anacondas, despite anacondas being the largest living snake known to man.

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TitanoboaAnaconda
Size40-50 feet long; over 2500 pounds15-20 feet long; over 200 pounds
AppearanceLittle is known other than its enormous size and skull shape; has teeth made for eating fish rather than other preyOlive, yellow, and brown in color with dark splotches or diamond patterns; thick and long body covered in scales.
Location and HabitatPaleocene Epoch in South America; found in the first ever tropical rainforest. Enjoys wet habitats near rivers and pondsSouth America; warm and hot locations near water, including the Amazon. Can be found in forests and grasslands, but enjoys the water
BehaviorVery little is known, but was likely an apex predator during its era. Likely avoided major conflicts with other predators, given a snake’s typical shy natureReclusive until they are hungry; capable swimmers that avoid being on land for too long. Solitary until mating season, and their only natural predator is humanity
DietFishTurtles, birds, snakes, fish, tapirs

Key Differences Between Titanoboa vs Anaconda

titanoboa vs anaconda
Anacondas have a traditional snake mouth, perfect for eating prey whole, while titanoboas have unique teeth.

Chris Tefme/Shutterstock.com

There are many key differences between a titanoboa vs anaconda. Titanoboas are significantly larger than anacondas, despite anacondas being the largest living snake known to man. Anacondas have a traditional snake mouth, perfect for eating prey whole, while titanoboas have unique teeth. Finally, titanoboas likely lived the majority of their lives in the water given their large size, while anacondas spend time on land when they need sunlight and dry climates.

Let’s talk about these differences in more detail now!

Titanoboa vs Anaconda: Size and Weight

titanoboa vs anaconda
Titanoboas likely lived the majority of their lives in the water given their large size, while anacondas spend time on land when they need sunlight and dry climates.

Michael Rosskothen/Shutterstock.com

The primary difference between a titanoboa vs anaconda has to be their size and weight. While both of these snakes are members of the Boidae family, they are extremely different sizes. The titanoboa far outweighs an anaconda, and is much longer than it too. This is certainly saying something, especially when you consider the fact that the anaconda is the largest snake in the world currently!

The average green anaconda grows anywhere from 15-20 feet long and the titanoboa grows 40-50 feet in length. Plus, there is no contest when it comes to these two snakes and their weight. An anaconda weighs 200-300 pounds total, while the titanboa reached weights of over 2500 pounds! 

Titanoboa vs Anaconda: Location and Habitat Preferences

titanoboa vs Anaconda
The average green anaconda grows anywhere from 15-20 feet long and the titanoboa grows 40-50 feet in length.

Mark_Kostich/Shutterstock.com

Another potential difference between the titanoboa and an anaconda is their locations and preferred habitats. While both of these snakes live in South America, only the anaconda is alive today, given that the titanoboa lived in prehistoric times. However, scientists claim that the titanoboa enjoyed a similar habitat to the anaconda. Let’s talk more about that now. 

Both the anaconda and the titanoboa enjoy watery habitats and warm climates, which is why South America is perfect for these two snakes. However, it is likely that the titanoboa spent all of its life in the water given its size and the buoyancy provided by living in water, while anacondas spend some of their life on shore or land.

Even anacondas prefer swimming and living in water compared to the vast majority of other snakes. But they still enjoy sunning themselves on land or hunting when the time is right, though anacondas are much more capable in the water than on land. 

Titanoboa vs Anaconda: Appearance

titanoboa vs anaconda
It is likely that the titanoboa spent all of its life in the water given its size and the buoyancy provided by living in water, while anacondas spend some of their life on shore or land.

Michael Rosskothen/Shutterstock.com

There is likely a difference in appearance between a titanoboa versus anaconda. Their size difference alone makes them clearly distinct from one another, but there are likely other distinguishing features between these two snakes. Let’s talk about those now.

We know exactly what an anaconda looks like, and the overall appearance of this snake is likely different from the appearance of a titanoboa. For example, anacondas are found in shades of green, yellow, and brown, with distinct splotches or patterns. The main physical difference between the titanoboa and the anaconda is the skull shape of the titanoboa.

Scientists claim that the skull and teeth of the titanoboa are completely unique compared to any other type of snake or boa found in the same family. Thus, the skull shape of the titanoboa is different from the anaconda, as the titanoboa had a mouth made for hunting fish almost exclusively. The anaconda eats a wide variety of things compared to the titanoboa. Let’s talk more about that now.

Titanoboa vs Anaconda: Diet and Hunting Style

titanoboa vs anaconda
The anaconda eats a wide variety of things compared to the titanoboa.

iStock.com/Schumaher

A final difference between the titanoboa and anaconda lies in their diet and hunting style. While both of these snakes exist in similar habitats, they prefer to eat drastically different things. For example, the titanoboa ate fish as its primary food source, while anacondas eat a variety of things such as birds, turtles, fish, tapirs, and other creatures. 

The hunting styles of the titanoboa and anaconda differ as well. Anacondas utilize constriction to take down prey much larger than them, while the Titanoboa likely only needed to swim and capture fish in its large mouth. Additionally, anacondas also hunt on land, while it is extremely likely that titanoboas only hunted in water.

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About the Author

I am a non-binary freelance writer working full-time in Oregon. Graduating Southern Oregon University with a BFA in Theatre and a specialization in creative writing, I have an invested interest in a variety of topics, particularly Pacific Northwest history. When I'm not writing personally or professionally, you can find me camping along the Oregon coast with my high school sweetheart and Chihuahua mix, or in my home kitchen, perfecting recipes in a gleaming cast iron skillet.

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