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Author Topic: how does one differenciate between a venomous and a non venomous snake??  (Read 5664 times)

Offline hamza

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how does one differenciate between a venomous and a non venomous snake??


 

Offline dentstudent

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If your leg drops off after you were bitten, it was probably venomous.......
 

Online Bored chemist

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Or the bite got infected.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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There is nothing that will identify a snake as venomous or non-venomous. Some (in fact many) non-venomous snakes mimic venomous snakes in order to deter predators. Coral snakes & cobras are among those mimicked by non-venomous snakes.
 

another_someone

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Interestingly, I saw some article recently that suggested that new research indicates that there is no such thing as a nonvenomous snake, only some snakes are incapable of injecting the venom into a live prey (e.g. they will inject the venom, which includes many digestive juices, when the prey is well within the mouth, so long after it has been killed by constriction, or other means).

Again, there seems to be molecular evidence that all snakes derived from a single venomous lizard, so all snakes have the genes for creating venom, but they use it differently.

As for snakes mimicking venomous snakes, I recall something about garter snakes, usually green, a colour that is clearly for camouflage, and thus nonthreatening; will sometimes be born brightly coloured, and thus apparently venomous, and it behaviour will be emboldened by its change in colour (after all, if it can't hide, it may as well be brazen and hope to intimidate its potential predators).
 

Offline dentstudent

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There's a great section on venomous snakes in Douglas Adam's book "Last Chance to See" when he visits a snake expert before going in to the jungle - it may have been in Australia - I forget exactly, but the upshot was if you got bitten, there was nothing much to do except, well nothing really - just don't get bitten! If you haven't read it, you really should!
 

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