Wednesday, 21 September 2011

ADDER

ADDER-Vipera berus
The adder has the greatest terrestrial range of any snake in the world.
DESCRIPTION: Usually up to 65cm (2ft) but occasionally up to 90cm (3ft). The ground colour is most commonly grey but may be reddish brown, yellow, olive or greenish. It is most easily distinguished by the dark zigzag pattern running down the back and by the dark V or X shaped mark on the head.
DISTRIBUTION: Most to Europe (absent from Ireland, southern SpainItaly and the southern Balkans) up to the 
Arctic Circle, east
 to the northern Pacific coast of China.
HABITAT: Very varied, moors woodland, marshy meadows; it is even a capable swimmer.
FOODVenomous. It eats small mammals and lizards.
BREEDINGLive-bearing; litters vary between 4-12 according to the size of the female.

MALAYAN PIT VIPER

MALAYAN PIT VIPER
Enhydris plumbea
Locally known as the “ax snake” because a bite can have the same result as a blow from an axe – the loss of a limb.
DESCRIPTION: Averages 70-80cm (28-32in).
Patterned with angular markings of dark brown, edged with black on a reddish-brown background.
DISTRIBUTION: Indo-China, Malaya, Sumatra and Broneo.
HABITAT: Forests and oil plam plantations where it is particularly common. A perfectly camouflaged “sit and wait” hunter that lies motionless even when approached. Very dangerous to “rubber tappers” if they work without shoes.
FOODRodents, frogs and reptiles.
BREEDINGAfter laying 13 to 30 eggs, the female coils around them until they hatch about 40 days later. It is unusual for vipers to show maternal care like this.

HORNED DESERT VIPER

HORNED DESERT VIPER
Cerastes cerastes
A snake of shifting sands that moves by “side winding”.
DESCRIPTION: Average length is about 60cm (2ft). The colour of the snake generally matches the sand surface in the region an individual occurs, varying between pink and yellow, with regular blotching on the back and heavily keeled scales. The most remarkable features are the long horns over the eye that allow sand to accumulate while keeping the eye velar of cover as the snake waits in ambush.
DISTRIBUTION: Through much of North Africa and well into the Sahara, to the Middle Est.
HABITAT: This snake avoids the extremes of desert temperatures by burying itself along the length of its body with rhythmic muscle contractions, then waits for suitable prey to pass by.
FOODVenomous, feeding on desert rodents and lizards.
BREEDINGLays a clutch of eggs in disused burrow or under stones.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Most deadly, dangerous rattles and vipers snakes

OTTOMAN VIPER-Vipera xanthina  
                                 
This snake can be distinguished from the other vipers in its European range, as it is the only one that lacks a nose horn.
DESCRIPTION: Up to 120cm (4ft). Thick-bodied with no nose horn or characteristic head pattern. The colour is variable, grey, sandy or on the mouth just under the eye. The dark brown stripe on the back is irregular, often broken up into blotches; the underside is grayish, but yellow or orange under the tail.
DISTRIBUTION: Turkey, through Asia Minor into Lebanon and the ex-Soviet Union.
HABITAT: Found in open woodland, rocky hillsides, pastures and often cultivated areas. A sluggish viper, diurnal normally, but can be active at night during the hotter months.
FOODVenomous with a bite that could be fatal to human beings. Feeds mainly on mammals and birds but take lizards also.
BREEDINGLive-bearing, averaging around 15 in a litter.


COPPERHEAD-Agkistrodon contortrix  
                                      
Though painful, the venomous bite of the copperhead rarely causes fatalities.
DESCRIPTION: 61-134cm (2-4 ½ ft). Usually a fairly chunky snake. Often distinguished by a pattern across the back that is dark brown on the tan, orange or grayish ground colour. A pit viper, it has small facial pits; the body scales are weakly keeled.
DISTRIBUTION: Much of southeastern USA, except Florida, and bounded in the west by central Texas and Kansas.
HABITAT: Found in a variety of habitats from rocky hillsides to lush swamp vegetation, its coloration makes it inconspicuous, but if disturbed it will berate its tail rapidly and will strike swiftly.
FOODVenomous, eating mainly small mammals, but also lizards, snakes, amphibians and insects such as cicadas.
BREEDINGLive-bearing, the young have bright yellow tail-tips that fade as the snake ages.

NOSE-HORNED VIPER-Vipera ammodytes
Highly venomous, potentially the most dangerous viper in Europe.

DESCRIPTION: Up to 90cm (3ft) long, but more regularly under 65cm (2ft). Stout-bodies with a triangle head, males are more often grey and females browner. A clearly marked zigzag striping is normally unbroken on the back, while the underside is grayish to pink with some darker spotting and red, yellow or green under the tail.
DISTRIBUTION: a southern species, from northern Italy through the Balkans into Greece and South West Asia.
HABITAT: Prefers dry, sunny, rocky slopes with some vegetation. Mostly terrestrial, but can climb; usually encountered during the day and when disturbed hisses loudly.
FOODVenomous, feeds mostly on small mammals, birds and lizards.
BREEDINGThe females bear live young, which are born in late summer.

COTTON MOUTH-Agkistrodon piscivorus
                                 
This dangerous snake will often give warming when disturbed by vibrating its tail and gaping its mouth to reveal the “cotton” white interior.
DESCRIPTION: 76-189cm (2½-6ft). A large snake that is dark, olive, brown and black above. The cross banding on the back is darker still, but sometimes hard to see, while the belly is usually a little lighter than the back. Care is needed to distinguish it from water snakes, but the presence of facial pits and (on a dead specimen) the single anal scales are diagnostic.
DISTRIBUTION: The southern states of the USA, from Virginia in an arc bounded by the eastern seaboard taking in Florida through to Oklahoma and Texas.
HABITAT: Semi-aquatic, found in swamps, lakes and ditches. A fairly lethargic snake whose behavior in retreating slowly or standing its ground when disturbed marks it out from the fast-fleeting water snakes, as does its habit of vibrating its tail.
FOODVenomous, mainly feeding on fish will take birds, mammals and amphibians, as well as baby alligators and turtles.
BREEDINGLive- bearing; gives birth between August and September to up to 15 young. Breeds mainly every other year.

SIDE WINDER-Grotalus cerastes  
                                
Famous for its classic mode of locomotion that never allows too much of the body to touch the brning desert surface at any one time.
DESCRIPTION: 43-82cm (1½-2½ft). A shortish, stubby and rattlesnakes with prominently rough scales and triangular horns over the eyes.
DISTRIBUTION: Northwestern Mexico, southern parts of UtahArizonaNevada and eastern California.
HABITAT: Spends the day hidden in mammal burrows or beneath low bushes; it emerge into its arid desert habitat at night. Often encountered basking at the side of roads during the day otherwise elusive, but the parallel J shaped marking it makes in the sand are a distinctive sign of its presence in an area.
FOODVenomous; eats pocket mice, kangaroo rats and lizards.
BREEDINGLive- bearing, producing 5-18 young in late summer or early autumns.

TIMBER RATTLE SNAKE-Grotalus horridus                                 
The only rattlesnake in most of northeastern USA, but relatively common only in undisturbed montane area as it has been persecuted in much of the rest of its range.
DESCRIPTION: 88 – 189cm (3-6ft). Large variation between southern and northern populations. The head may be unmarked or with a dark stripe behind the eye, the back may be dark with blotches on the side and forming cross bands nearer the fail or it may have a brownish stripe running own it with chevron like cross banding. Both show a black tail.
DISTRIBUTION: Much of eastern USA, from Maitter south to northern Florida, west into Minnesota and Texas.
HABITAT: Prefers remote areas, wooded hillsides, rock outcrops, swamps and river floodplains. Active between April and October, mostly during daylight but also night during the summer. In October the snakes may congregate in great numbers at favoured hibernation sites.
FOODVenomous; often waiting perfectly still in order to ambush prey such as squirrels, chipmunks, mice and birds.
BREEDINGFemales give birth every other year, producing 5-17 live-born young between late August to October.

WESTERN RATTLESNAKE-Grotalus viridis    
                                 
One of the most aggressive of the rattlesnakes, its bite can be lethal even if treated.
DESCRIPTION: 40-162cm (1½-5½ft). Very variable over much of its range, but often with two diagonal stripes on the head, one above and one below the eye. It is mainly some shade of brown with darker, regular blotches on the back and sides that thin nearer the tail and almost join to become bands. The lighter coloured tail is ringed with black at the base.
DISTRIBUTION: Much of western USA, into northern Mexico and some Sothern parts of western Canada.
HABITAT: Mainly crepuscular, preferring rock canyons and scrubby slopes, but often found in agricultural and suburban locations.
FOODVenomous, preying chiefly on small rodents.
BREEDING4-21 live-born young are produced from August to October, after mating either in autumn or in March or May.

WESTERN DIAMONDBACK RATTLE SNAKE- Crotalus atrox                                      
Noted for its defensive position when it raises its head well above the coils in a classic S shaped pose and intermittently compounds its threat by rattling its tail.
DESCRIPTION: 86-213cm (3-7ft). A large snake with variable coloration, usually brownish with pale-bordered diamond-shape patches on the back. The tail is ringed with black and white bands.
DISTRIBUTION: Southwestern USA and into northern Mexico.
HABITAT: Prefers dry or semi-arid areas like canyons and scrubby plains, but also montane locations and river bluffs. A secretive snake, but one that is often in close proximity to areas of human population and is annually persecuted in the “rattlesnake” round-ups.
FOODVenomous, feeding on rodents and birds.
BREEDING4-25 young are live-born in late summer.

BLACK-TAILED RATTLESNAKE-Grotalus molossus
Possibly the rattlesnake that is least likely to rattle when disturbed.
DESCRIPTION: 71-125cm (2-4ft). The body colour varies from grayish-brown to a very back are inevitably darker than the ground colour and with paler centres; they from diamonds nearer the head and thick bands towards the tail. The pattern is usually edged in white or grey and the tail is plan black. 
DISTRIBUTION: from Arizona, east into central texas and south into northern Mexico 
HABITAT: found on cliffs and rock outcrops, often near streams, but also encountered in pine and deciduous woodland.
FOODVenomous, feeds on a variety of small rodents.
BREEDING3-6 live-born young are born in late summer

MASSASAUGA-Sistrurus catenatus     
                                         
Differs from all other rattlers by having 9 large scales at the front of the head.
DESCRIPTION: At only up to 100cm (40in), a short, but well- proportioned, snake A light grey to grey-brown snake with a row of large brown, grey or block blotches down the back and smaller and fainter spots on the side. Has a broad dark eye stripe and long mark from the head to the neck, sometime shaped like a lyre.
DISTRIBUTION: Southern Canada (Ontario), southwest to Arizona and northeastern Mexico.
HABITAT: prefers moist situations like swamps and around rivers, but in the west it adapts to drier conditions.
FOODVenomous, eating lizards, snake small mammals and frogs.
BREEDING: live-bearing; a litter of 2-19 born between July and September.



Monday, 12 September 2011

Venomous desert and pit vipers

HORNED DESERT VIPER-Cerastes cerastes
 
A snake of shifting sands that moves by “side winding”.

DESCRIPTION:
 Average length is about 60cm . The colour of the snake generally matches the sand surface in the region an individual occurs, varying between pink and yellow, with regular blotching on the back and heavily keeled scales. The most remarkable features are the long horns over the eye that allow sand to accumulate while keeping the eye velar of cover as the snake waits in ambush.
DISTRIBUTION: 
Through much of North Africa and well into the Sahara desert example,morocco desert,algerian desert to egypt desert to the Middle East of saudi arabia desert, oman desert  and many other deserts found in the world .
HABITAT: 
desert horned snakes avoids the extremes of desert temperatures by burying itself along the length of its body with rhythmic muscle contractions, then waits for suitable prey to pass by.
FOOD:
 Venomous, feeding on desert rodents and lizards.
BREEDING:
 Lays a clutch of eggs in disused burrow or under stones.


Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Subphylum:Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order:Squamata
Suborder:Serpentes
Family:  Viperidae
Subfamily:Viperinae
Genus:Cerastes



MALAYAN PIT VIPER-Enhydris plumbea
Locally known as the “ax snake” because a bite can have the same result as a blow from an axe – the loss of a limb.
DESCRIPTION: 
Average lengths is  80-90cm.
Pattern with angular markings of dark brown, edged with black on a reddish-brown background.
DISTRIBUTION:
 Indo-China, Malaya,thailand, Sumatra and Broneo.
HABITAT:
 Forests and oil plam plantations where it is particularly common. A perfectly camouflaged “sit and wait” hunter that lies motionless even when approached. Very dangerous to “rubber tappers” if they work without shoes.
FOOD:
 Rodents, frogs and reptiles.
BREEDING:
 After laying 13 to 30 eggs, the female coils around them until they hatch about 40 days later. It is unusual for vipers to show maternal care like this.


Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Subphylum:Vertebrata
Class:Reptilia
Order:Squamata
Suborder:Serpentes
Family:Viperidae
Subfamily:Crotalinae
Genus:Calloselasma
Species:C. rhodostoma
Facts and precautions to know about Malayan viper
Serious Malayan pit viper venom poisoning is very rare and death in human beings is highly unheard off.When bitten by Malayan viper the risk that can occur are shock, hemorrhagic syndrome, local necrosis. Local necrosis is a cause of prolonged morbidity.Bacterial infection following necrosis may spread to bones and joints leading to loss of a digit or limb, or crippling deformity due to the gangrene of the affected areas.Tetanus secondary to post necrotic infection is a cause of death.
Signs and Symptoms of Poisoning
Immediate local swelling. Swelling extending above the elbow or knee if bitten on the hand or foot respectively indicate moderate to severe poisoning.Other local poisoning symptoms include: local pain, blistering and local necrosis.Systemic poisoning symptoms include: continuing oozing from wound, bleeding gums. Cough hard to produce spit: hemoptysis indicates severe poisoning.
 First Aid Measures
The patient should be reassured and kept warm Gently clean the site of the bite but do not attempt to cut the wound and suck out the venom. This will introduce infection.Take the patient to the nearest hospital as quickly as possible Immobilize the patient immediately after the bite and also during transit to the hospital. The bitten limb in particular should be kept still and below the level of the heart If the snake has been killed, bring it together to hospital for identification.

ADDER-Vipera berus
The adder has the greatest terrestrial range of any snake in the world.
DESCRIPTION:
 Usually up to 65cm  but occasionally up to 90cm . The ground colour is most commonly grey but may be reddish brown, yellow, olive or greenish. It is most easily distinguished by the dark zigzag pattern running down the back and by the dark V or X shaped mark on the head.
DISTRIBUTION:
 Most to Europe (absent from Ireland, southern SpainItaly and the southern Balkans) up to the 
Arctic Circle, east
 to the northern Pacific coast of China,japan.
HABITAT: 
Very varied, moors woodland, marshy meadows; it is even a capable swimmer.
FOOD:
 Venomous. It eats small mammals and lizards.
BREEDING:
 Live-bearing; litters vary between 4-12 according to the size of the female.




Saturday, 3 September 2011

Africa's most dangerous and deadly snakes

GREEN MAMBA-Dendroaspis angusticeps

A regular resident of the roofs of a variety of buildings, including outhouses.its is also categorized as endangered poisonous snakes species.
DESCRIPTION
Green mamba snake is of  190cm in height, the body color is normally green with a hint of gold between the scales; sometimes the whole body may be of a yellow hue. Like the black mamba it has a long,
Angular head, but the lining of the mouth is white.
DISTRIBUTION
 Green mamba is mostly found in East Africa- Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi below the Sahara and down to the cape in the south. 
HABITAT
 Green mamba snakes are Art arboreal snake, shy and rarely seen in its preferred habitat of well-forested areas, but more regularly encountered in the sparser vegetation of dry bush areas and coastal scrub.
FOOD
  Venomous, feeding almost exclusively on birds,eggs,lizards and mammals.
BREEDING
 Green mambas breed up to ten eggs on  land in a tree hollow or in leaf litter.





BLACK MAMBA-Dendroaspis Polylepis

Black Mamba are the Africa's most dangerous and feared snakes with   a top speed of 23 kmh, this snake is reputedly the fastest in the world. They are mostly active during the day.

DESCRIPTION
A very large snake of  up to 430cm  long seldom, if ever, black; they are generally olive-grey to mottled brown with a satiny sheen. The interior of the mouth is in fact, the only part of the snake that is black. The head is slightly flattened at the sides, making it appear heavier than in many other species of snakes.
The Black mamba’s snakes are mostly found in Africa in southern Ethiopia down to the cape of South Africa
HABITAT
Diurnal and mostly terrestrial, rocky places, Savannah lands and also woodlands but will climb to bask and HUNT for prey.  It is said that black mambas are the fastest than people can run  and agile in branches or undergrowth as on open ground, it must forage extensively to support such vigorous activity.
 It has an incredibly high rate of digestion helped by the potency of the venom, and can digest a large rat in an hour.
FOOD
Mamba bite highly venomous, it kills prey with a neurotoxin that in human beings could cause death.
CLASSIFICATION
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Subphylum:Vertebrata
Class:     Reptilia
Order:   Squamata
Suborder:Serpentes
Family:  Elapidae
Genus: Dendroaspis
Species:D. polylepis

Friday, 2 September 2011

ROUND ISLAND BOA (Casarea dussumieri)

ROUND ISLAND BOA (Casarea dussumieri)


Description: The Round Island boa is a rare and elusive snake species about which not much is known. It lives on Round Island in the Indian Ocean and is seldom seen. It is dark gray above, lighter below, and has small, keeled scales. Unlike true boas that give birth to live young, the Round Island boa lays eggs. There may be fewer than 500 individuals left in the wild.

IUCN Status: Endangered
USFWS Status: Endangered
Major Threats: Habitat loss and competition with non-native species
Habitat: Tropical rainforest
Location: Round Island off the coast of Mauritius
Diet: Lizards

India's most poison snake

MONOCLED COBRA-Naja naja

It is India’s good snake, a valuable exterminator of rats and mice.  Monocled cobras have Neuro toxic venom affecting nerves, brain, and causing death very quickly without treatment. They are very fast strikers. The baby monocled cobras are every bit as the most deadly snakes as their parents.


DESCRIPTION
A large specimen would attain 2 meters in length. Typically yellowish or dark brown, with a black and white spectacle marking on the neck that is only obvious when the snake is aroused and the hood is spread.
There is also a pair of black and white spots on the undersurface of the hood of the monocled cobra.
DISTRIBUTION
Southern Asia especially in Thailand and indo-Australian archipelago.
HABITAT
Found in a wide range of habitats; forest, farmland, even towns under houses of people, on trees especially early in the morning when the sun rises.
FOOD
Mice, frogs, eggs and reptiles.
BREEDING
Lays 10 to 30 eggs

Classification:
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Elapidae
Genus: Naja
Species: Naja kaouthia.