Psammodynastes pulverulentus Common Mock Viper
near Poring, Sabah, MalaysiaMarch 2, 2018
Common Mock Viper (Psammodynastes pulverulentus)
I must admit that I was a little disappointed when I realized that this nondescript small brown snake was a Mock Viper. A Mock Viper should, in my personal opinion, look at least kinda like an actual viper, and I wasn't seeing that resemblance. This one also looked a little disappointed (see how it is holding its head down and trying to avoid eye contact), probably because it realized that it wasn't scaring me even a little bit.

It turns out that there is a common and widespread viper in southeast Asia called the Malayan Pit Viper (Calloselasma rhodostoma) that does look roughly similar to this snake. It has a reasonably similar pattern, similar coloration, and a similarly long body. When I learned that, I regained a little respect for my new Mock Viper friend. Cheer up, li'l guy!

Danum Valley Conservation Area, Sabah, MalaysiaMarch 10, 2018
Common Mock Viper (Psammodynastes pulverulentus)
Later, I learned that these Mock Vipers will, when threatened, actually change the shape of their eyes so that they look more like real viper eyes. Now that is awesome. I'm sorry I ever doubted them.
Online references:
Printed references: