SNAKE

Snakes are mysterious. Most people are scared of them or find them repulsive. They are stealth and some are dangerous so our instinct makes us keep a safe distance from them. Snakes are so different from us that it fires up our imagination, thus the snake is present in a lot of symbols. Welcome to snake world.

Kingdom: Animalia... Phylum: Chordata... Sub-Phylum: Vertebrata... Class: Sauropsida... Subclass: Diapsida... Super-Order: Lepidosauria... Order: Squamata... Sub-Order: Serpentes...

micrurus_tener python antaresia_maculosa

Snakes are elongate legless carnivorous reptiles of the suborder Serpentes that can be distinguished from legless lizards by their lack of eyelids and external ears. Like all squamates, snakes are ectothermic amniote vertebrates covered in overlapping scales. Many species of snakes have skulls with many more joints than their lizard ancestors, enabling them to swallow prey much larger than their heads with their highly mobile jaws. In order to accommodate their narrow bodies, snakes' paired organs (such as kidneys) appear one in front of the other instead of side by side, and most have only one functional lung. Some species retain a pelvic girdle with a pair of vestigial claws on either side of the cloaca.

Living snakes are found on every continent except Antarctica and most islands. Fifteen families are currently recognized comprising 456 genera and over 2,900 species. They range in size from the tiny, 10 cm long thread snake to pythons and anacondas of up to 7.6 metres (25 ft) in length. The recently discovered fossil Titanoboa was 13 metres (43 ft) long. Snakes are thought to have evolved from either burrowing or aquatic lizards during the Cretaceous period (c 150 Ma). The diversity of modern snakes appeared during the Paleocene period (c 66 to 56 Ma).

Most species are non-venomous and those that have venom use it primarily to kill and subdue prey rather than for self-defense. Some possess venom potent enough to cause painful injury or death to humans. Those which are non-venomous either swallow prey alive or kill it via constriction.

snake_in_basket eierschlange_frisst_zwerg

Cobras, vipers, and closely related species use venom to immobilize or kill their prey. The venom is modified saliva, delivered through fangs. The fangs of 'advanced' venomous snakes like viperids and elapids are hollow in order to inject venom more effectively, while the fangs of rear-fanged snakes such as the Boomslang merely have a groove on the posterior edge to channel venom into the wound. Snake venoms are often prey specific, its role in self-defense is secondary. Venom, like all salivary secretions, is a pre-digestant which initiates the breakdown of food into soluble compounds allowing for proper digestion and even "non-venomous" snake bites (like any animal bite) will cause tissue damage.

Certain birds, mammals, and other snakes such as kingsnakes that prey on venomous snakes have developed resistance and even immunity to certain venom. Venomous snakes include three families of snakes and do not constitute a formal classification group used in taxonomy. The term poisonous snake is mostly incorrect—poison is inhaled or ingested whereas venom is injected. There are, however, two exceptions—Rhabdophis sequesters toxins from the toads it eats then secretes them from nuchal glands to ward off predators, and a small population of garter snakes in Oregon retains enough toxin in their liver from the newts they eat to be effectively poisonous to local small predators such as crows and foxes.

black Mamba snake on MiraMira.ca

Snake venoms are complex mixtures of proteins and are stored in poison glands at the back of the head. In all venomous snakes these glands open through ducts into grooved or hollow teeth in the upper jaw. These proteins can potentially be a mix of neurotoxins (which attack the nervous system), hemotoxins (which attack the circulatory system), cytotoxins, bungarotoxins and many other toxins that affect the body in different ways. Almost all snake venom contains hyaluronidase, an enzyme that ensures rapid diffusion of the venom.

Venomous snakes that use hemotoxins usually have the fangs that secrete the venom in the front of their mouths, making it easier for them to inject the venom into their victims. Some snakes that use neurotoxins, such as the mangrove snake, have their fangs located in the back of their mouths, with the fangs curled backwards. This makes it both difficult for the snake to use its venom and for scientists to milk them. Elapid snakes, however, such as cobras and kraits are proteroglyphous, possessing hollow fangs which cannot be erected toward the front of their mouths and cannot "stab" like a viper, they must actually bite the victim.

It has recently been suggested that all snakes may be venomous to a certain degree, with harmless snakes having weak venom and no fangs.. Most snakes currently labelled “non-venomous” would still be considered harmless according to this theory, as these snakes either lack a delivery method for the venom or are simply incapable of delivering enough to endanger a human. This theory postulates that snakes may have evolved from a common lizard ancestor that was venomous, from which venomous lizards like the gila monster and beaded lizard may also have derived, as well as the monitor lizards and now extinct mosasaurs. They share this venom clade with various other saurian species.

Feeding and diet
All snakes are strictly carnivorous, eating small animals including lizards, other snakes, small mammals, birds, eggs, fish, snails or insects. Because snakes cannot bite or tear their food to pieces, a snake must swallow its prey whole. The body size of a snake has a major influence on its eating habits. Smaller snakes eat smaller prey. Juvenile pythons might start out feeding on lizards or mice and graduate to small deer or antelope as an adult, for example.

SOUL

BODY.......... MIND

....................MAIN INDEX

#1-ANIMALS ...... #1-SOCIETY

#2-ENERGIES ..... .#2-SPORT

#3-PLANTS ........ #3-EDUCATION

#4-MINERALS ......#4-SCIENCE

........................................#5-THINGS

........................................#6-EATING

........................................#7-FINANCE

COOL ANIMAL LINKS...

HAPPY ANIMALS

COOL GAMES LINKS...

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FACTS
Translation--Traducción--Traduction
English: Snake
Snakes can go in sizes from 10 cm to 7 m.

Español : Serpiente
Los Serpientes puedes ir entre 10cm y 7m.

Français: Serpent
Les Serpents peuvent aller de 10 cm à 7 m.

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MONTREAL, CANADA
Phone: 514-845-2194
info@network007.com

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