BiologyIntegrated Science

Science; do snakes give birth through their mouth or only lay eggs

Science; do snakes give birth through their mouth or only lay eggs,

Snakes have two different ways of producing young, either by laying eggs or live birth. The
snakes that have live birth do not carry their babies in the womb-like mammals; rather, they
grow their babies inside of their bodies as if they were in eggs. The “eggs” are in a thin
the membrane that dissolves once the snakes are ready to be born. This type of gestation is called
ovoviviparous. Other snakes lay soft white eggs that are incubated in a nest

Snakes that lays eggs

King snake


Rat snake

Corn snake

Snakes that have live births



Do snakes give birth through their mouth? the answer is a Big No.

The vast majority of snakes are oviparous, meaning they lay eggs, which they oviposit through their cloacas, just like birds (birds and snakes are both reptiles after all).

That said, a few snake species, like boas and most sea snakes for example, are ovoviviparous, meaning that the female will retain her eggs internally until they hatch either inside her cloaca or immediately after they are expelled. This is in contrast to viviparous placental mammals, which lack eggs entirely, and mammalian neonates are physically attached to their mother and nourished via a placenta.

Most snakes just lay eggs normally though, and either abandon them immediately after laying them (like most colubrids) or coil around them to provide warmth and protection during the months it takes for them to incubate (pythons for example), just as a bird will sit on her eggs. Some snakes, like King Cobras, even build avian-esque nests out of twigs and grasses. After oviposition, the female guards the eggs vigilantly and without repose for many weeks. As soon as the brood shows signs of hatching, however, all parental instinct is abjured, and the mother snake will desert the nest, leaving the hatchlings to fend for themselves.

No snake, and indeed no creature at all that I’m aware of, reproduce using their mouth. Have you ever seen a woman vomit up a baby?

Credit; Jason Sarasti


Peter N. Djangmah is a multifaceted individual with a passion for education, entrepreneurship, and blogging. With a firm belief in the power of digital education and science, I am affectionately known as the Private Minister of Information. Connect with me
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