Cobras are famous for the threatening hood at their neck. They spread the hood out when they feel threatened or angry. Their hood is made up of flaps of skin attached to long ribs. They are also able to lift their heads high up off the ground, which is not only kinda scary, but helps them to search for food. And just to make them a little scarier, they hiss loudly to scare off potential predators. There are 270 different types of Cobras and their relatives, including Taipans, Adders, Mambas, and many sea snakes including Kraits, and they all have short fangs and are all extremely poisonous. Cobras live in hot tropical areas in Africa, Australia, and Southern Asia and their relatives, the Coral Snake, can be found in the United States. They can be found underground, in trees, and under rocks. The King Cobra is not only an excellent climber but a super swimmer as well. They live in forests near streams.
Varieties of the spitting cobra range in color from dull black to pink, the lighter-colored ones marked by a black band around the neck. The ringhals, a different type of spitting cobra confined to southern Africa, is the smallest of the cobras, reaching only about 1.2 m (about 4 ft) in length. It is dark brown or black with ridged, or keeled, scales and light rings on the neck. The asp, or Egyptian cobra is widely distributed throughout Africa, being the most common. Contrary to folklore, cobras will seldom attack unprovoked. When threatened, however, the Cobra will make full use of its deadly force. Cobras are famous for their use by snake charmers because they respond well to visual cues, and are of spectacular appearance.