Generally tan to olive green with black checkering running the length of the body, lateral strips running back from the eyes with a 'V' shaped black line behind the head around the neck. Both juvenile and mature specimens exhibit the same colors and patterning with juveniles showing brighter more defined colors. Color morphs possible including colored markings on the sides.
Active during the night and day, the Checkered Keelback is relatively common in Hong Kong. It is known to be aggressive and quick to bite as well as flattening its head and neck and rising up off the ground similar to the Red Neck Keelback. Hunts small amphibians and fish.
Usually found in grass lands near water, rice fields and other slow moving bodies of water. This species hunts fish, frogs and occasionally toads as its favorite prey. Checkered Keelbacks are found all over Hong Kong including Hong Kong Island.