25 Animals That Are Similar To Snakes

Examples of snake-like animals include the American eel, the Asian jumping earthworm, the Asian jackal eel, the California legless lizard, and the eastern glass lizard.

Lizards, snakes, and amphibians are legless reptiles.

Although they may look similar, there are some important ways to tell these creatures apart.

For one thing, lizards usually have external ear openings, but snakes don’t.

In addition, lizards have eyelids that can blink, while the eyes of snakes are protected by a clear scale called the bril.

Snakes also lack limbs, and both lizards and amphibians have at least rudimentary legs.

Amphibians have a forked tongue like snakes, while lizards have forked tongues.

Examples of Animals Like Snakes

Examples of Animals Like Snakes

Scientific Name Archispirostreptus gigas Type Insect Animal Range subtropical rainforests of west Africa

The African giant black millipede is the largest millipede in the world, growing up to 38 cm (15 inches) in length.

It is a shiny black color with red markings on its body.

It is not venomous and does not bite, but it can release a noxious liquid from its body that smells like cyanide.

This millipede is often confused with snakes because of its long segmented body.

Scientific Name Anguilla rostrata Type Fish Animal Range Venezuela to Greenland and Iceland along the Atlantic coast

The American eel is a long, thin creature with a snake-like body.

It can grow up to four feet long, and its skin is covered in slimy mucus.

This fish is often mistaken for a snake, but there are some important ways to tell them apart.

For one thing, eels have gills, but snakes don’t.

Furthermore, eels have pectoral fins, while snakes have no limbs at all.

This creature is found in East Asia and can grow up to 40 cm in length.

It has a segmented, pink-brown body and no legs.

Its head is shaped like a cone and has two small black eyes.

4. Asian Swamp Eel

4. Asian Swamp Eel

Scientific NameMonopterus albusType of Animal Fish Classified to Asia.

It is also found in Central and South America, Africa, and Australia

Although its long, slender body may resemble that of a snake, the Asian eel is actually a fish.

It can grow to be over three feet long and is often sold in the pet trade.

Like other eels, it has a dorsal fin that runs the length of its body.

However, unlike other eels, the Asian sunken eel lacks pectoral and pelvic fins.

Scientific Name GymnophionaType Insect Animal Rangetropical and neotropical regions of the world, from Central and South America to Central Africa and Southeast Asia

Often mistaken for snakes, caecilians are amphibians.

They have long, cylindrical bodies and no legs, but differ from snakes in several ways.

Caecilians have poor eyesight and lack external ear openings.

6. California Legless Lizard

6. California Legless Lizard

The California legless lizard is a type of snake-like reptile.

It is often mistaken for a snake because it lacks legs and has a long, slender body.

However, the California legless lizard can be distinguished from snakes by external ear openings and eyelids.

In addition, this reptile has a forked tongue, unlike snakes.

Scientific Name Crocodylidae Animal Type ReptilianRangetropical Regions of Africa, Asia, Australia and America

Crocodiles are large reptiles that live in bodies of water such as lakes, rivers and marshes.

They have a long, slender snout and thick, scaly skin.

Crocodiles are predators that hunt fish, birds and other animals.

Although crocodiles are not like snakes they are part of the reptile family.

8. Eastern Glass Lizard

8. Eastern Glass Lizard

Scientific NameOphisaurus ventralisType Reptile Animal Range throughout the southern and eastern parts of Georgia and South Carolina

The Eastern glass lizard is a type of legless lizard.

It gets its name from the fact that, if threatened, it will break its tail to escape.

The broken tail will then swing around, distracting the predator and the lizard running away.

Despite their lack of legs, glass lizards are excellent climbers and are often high in trees.

9. Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar

9. Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar

Scientific NamePapilio glaucusType AnimalInsectRangeAlabama, Delaware, Georgia, and South Carolina

The eastern tiger caterpillar looks very similar to a snake.

Scientific Name Delephila elpenorType Insects Animals Parks and gardens, as well as woodland edges, rough grasslands, and dunes

The elephant hawk-moth caterpillar looks like a small snake with a long slender body and green, brown and pink color.

Scientific NameAnguilla anguillaType Fish Animal Range from northern Russia and Finland all the way down to the coasts of Morocco, Egypt, and even within the Black Sea

The European eel is a snake-like fish and can grow up to four feet in length.

Scientific NameHebomoia glaucippe Animal TypeInsectRangemuch of southern and southeastern Asia, as well as in southern China and southern Japan

The caterpillar, on the other hand, looks like a tiny snake with orange and black stripes running down its body.

Scientific Name Gymnothorax funebris Animal Type Fish Western Atlantic Ocean, from New Jersey to Bermuda, and the northern Gulf of Mexico south to Brazil

The green moray is a large eel that can grow up to 8 feet in length.

The moray is olive green with black spots and has a large head with sharp teeth.

Glass Lizard Island

Glass Lizard Island

Scientific NameOphisaurus compressusAnimal TypeReptileRangealong the coast of South Carolina in coastal and southern Georgia

The island glass lizard is a type of legless lizard native to the southeastern United States.

These lizards get their name from their translucent skin, which is visible in some places.

Glass lizards are often mistaken for snakes, but there are a few ways to tell them apart.

For one thing, glass lizards have eyelids, while snakes do not.

Additionally, glass lizards have ear openings, but snakes do not.

Scientific NameAnguilla japonicaType Fish Animal Japan, Korea, China and Vietnam, as well as the northern Philippines

The Japanese eel is a snake-like fish that can grow up to four feet in length.

It has a long slender body and a small mouth with sharp teeth.

Glass lizard mimic

Glass lizard mimic

Scientific NameOphisaurus mimicusAnimal TypeReptileRange along the coast of South Carolina and in coastal and southern Georgia

The miming glass lizard is a legless lizard that is often thought of as a snake.

It can be found in the southeastern United States and can grow up to three feet in length.

This lizard gets its name from its ability to shed its tail when grabbed by a predator.

The tail will continue to swing, distracting the predator as the lizard escapes.

Red Helen Swallowtail Caterpillar

Red Helen Swallowtail Caterpillar

Scientific Name Papilio helenus Type Insect Animal Range Forests in southern India and parts of southeast Asia

The red Helen swallowtail caterpillar looks like a small snake.

It is black with orange and white stripes running the length of its body.

Scientific NameAnguilla australisType Fish Animal New Zealand, Australia, and throughout the South Pacific

The shortfin eel is a snake-like fish found in the Indo-Pacific region.

It can grow to about 3 feet long and has a dark brown or black body with small white spots.

Slim Glass Lizard

Slim Glass Lizard

Scientific NameOphisaurus attenuatus Type Animal Range Thread throughout Georgia and South Carolina

The Slender Glass Lizard is a type of legless lizard.

The new tail will eventually grow back.

Slender Glass Lizards are found in the southeastern United States.

They can grow to about 2.5 feet in length.

The skin of the Slender Glass Lizard is smooth and shiny, and is usually brown or tan in color.

Scientific Name Anguis fragilis Type Insect Animal Range heather, tussocky grassland, woodland edges, and rides

The sloth is a legless lizard found in Europe and parts of Asia.

It can grow up to 20 inches long and is often mistaken for a snake.

One of the main ways to tell the difference between a slug and a snake is that slugs have eyelids, but snakes don’t.

Scientific Name Papilio troilus Animal Type Insect Range throughout the eastern half of the United States from southern Canada south to southern Florida (except the Miami and Keys area) and west to Texas

The spicy caterpillar looks like a snake.

It even has fake eye spots on its back that make it look like a snake’s head, with a forked tongue.

Scientific NameStudiesAnimal TypeReptileRangeWorldwide

Although the head of the turtle may look a bit like a snake, they are reptiles with hard shells.

Unlike snakes, turtles cannot coil their bodies and have limbs.

Scientific NameCalcides striatusAnimal TypeReptileRangethe Iberian Peninsula, southern France, and parts of northwestern Italy

The western three-toed skink is a small lizard found in the western United States and parts of Canada.

This lizard is brown or gray in color with dark stripes running down its body.

It grows to be about 4-5 inches long and is often mistaken for a snake.

One of the most distinctive features of the western three-toed skink is its tail.

This lizard can drop its tail when threatened and it will grow back over time.

Although there are many creatures that resemble snakes, they are actually very different.

Snakes are reptiles, while eels and caecilians are amphibians.

In addition, snakes lack eyelids and external ear openings.

Blind snakes are perhaps the most snake-like creatures, but they can be distinguished by their small size and lack of eyes.

Living in South Africa I had the pleasure of seeing most of these animals up close and personal.