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2010-03-15 14:30:00

Scientists reported on Sunday that some snakes can detect the faint body heat from prey three feet away with enough precision and speed to hunt in the dark. Scientists have known for decades that rattlesnakes, boas and pythons have pit organs between their eye and nostril to sense infrared radiation in their environment. The western diamondback rattlesnake is in a league of its own by having the ability to heat-seek up to 10 times more precisely than any of its relatives. The snake has...

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2010-03-02 09:10:00

The remains of an extraordinary fossil unearthed in 67 million-year old sediments from Gujarat, western India, provide a rare glimpse at an unusual feeding behavior in ancient snakes. An international paleontological team led by the University of Michigan's Jeff Wilson, and the Geological Survey of India's Dhananjay Mohabey, publish their discovery this week in the open-access journal PLoS Biology. The remains of a nearly complete snake were found preserved in the nest of a sauropod dinosaur,...

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2010-02-10 06:47:00

Reptiles are bred in captivity primarily for their skins, but some restaurants and population groups also want them for their meat. A study shows that eating these animals can have side effects that call into question the wisdom of eating this 'delicacy.' Parasites, bacteria and viruses, and to a lesser extent contamination from heavy metals and residues of veterinary drugs-"“ eating reptile meat can cause several problems to health. This is the conclusion of a study published in the...

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2010-02-03 08:05:00

A 60-million-year-old relative of crocodiles described this week by University of Florida researchers in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology was likely a food source for Titanoboa, the largest snake the world has ever known. Working with scientists from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, paleontologists from the Florida Museum of Natural History on the UF campus found fossils of the new species of ancient crocodile in the Cerrejon Formation in northern Colombia. The...

2010-01-12 09:37:00

NEW YORK, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Animal adventurer and venom expert Donald Schultz has traveled worldwide to collect venom and DNA from rare animals for his television series WILD RECON (Tuesdays at 9 PM on Animal Planet). Each week, Donald gets his hands on some of the deadliest animals on the planet: black mambas in South Africa, sea snakes in Australia, and even rampaging elephants in Sri Lanka. But in January, he will face his toughest challenge yet: to spend 10 consecutive days...

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2009-12-11 10:45:00

Name all the venomous animals you can think of and you probably come up with snakes, spiders, bees, wasps and perhaps poisonous frogs. But catfish? A new study by University of Michigan graduate student Jeremy Wright finds that at least 1,250 and possibly more than 1,600 species of catfish may be venomous"”far more than previously believed. The research is described in a paper published online Dec. 4 in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology. Lest anyone have concerns about...

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2009-12-04 08:58:12

In contrast to the exhaustive research into venom produced by snakes and spiders, venomous fish have been neglected and remain something of a mystery. Now, a study of 158 catfish species, published in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology, has catalogued the presence of venom glands and investigated their biological effects. Jeremy Wright, from the University of Michigan, USA, carried out the investigation. He said, "I used histological and toxicological techniques to elucidate the...

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2009-11-06 14:41:42

Officials in Florida say they are seeing more invasive species of snakes entering into the warm semi-tropic climate. "Compounding their risk to native species and ecosystems is that these snakes mature early, produce large numbers of offspring, travel long distances, and have broad diets that allow them to eat most native birds and mammals," Gordon Rodda, scientist at the Fort Collins Science Center, told AFP. Rodda recently issued a report to the US Geological Survey noting that there...

2009-11-06 04:00:00

WILMINGTON, N.C., Nov. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today a U.S. House Subcommittee will consider H.R. 2811 a bill that could determine the fate of much of the reptile trade in the United States. Introduced by U.S. Representative Kendrick Meek (D-FL), who recently announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate, the bill could add the entire genus python to the Injurious Wildlife list of the Lacey Act; a designation reserved for only the most dangerous alien invaders to our natural eco-system....

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2009-10-13 15:15:00

Five giant non-native snake species would pose high risks to the health of ecosystems in the United States should they become established here, according to a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) report released today. The USGS report details the risks of nine non-native boa, anaconda and python species that are invasive or potentially invasive in the United States. Because all nine species share characteristics associated with greater risks, none was found to be a low ecological risk. Two of these...


Latest Snake Reference Libraries

Scarlet Snake, Cemophora coccinea
2014-01-17 10:16:15

The Scarlet snake (Cemophora coccinea) is a member of the Columbrae family. They are found only in the United States, in: southeastern Texas, eastern Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware. The species typically inhabits oak and pine forests with sandy soil good for burrowing. The Scarlet snake only grows to lengths of approximately 14-26 inches. Commonly...

Indian Gamma Snake, Boiga trigonata
2014-01-17 10:01:59

The Indian gamma snake (Boiga trigonata) may also be referred to as the common cat snake. The species, a member of the Colubridae family, ranges throughout Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Nepal, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, southern Turkmenistan, southern Uzbekistan, southeastern Tajikistan, and Iran. Due to the vast areas the snake is found, habitats vary greatly from gallery forests to sparse desert shrublands. The Indian gamma snake has a yellow, olive or pale grayish coloration. A white zigzag...

Rosy Boa, Lichanura trivirgata
2014-01-17 09:41:32

The Rosy boa (Lichanura trivirgata) is commonly found throughout the southwestern areas of The United States, but may be found in parts of northwestern Mexico as well. A member of the Boidae family, the Rosy boa inhabits coastal desert canyons, rocky, desert slopes, creek-beds, and hillsides with large boulders. The Rosy boa is commonly fully grown measuring just over 3 feet. The species ranges in color from a yellowish, to tan or slate grey and 3 varying types of stripes run the length of...

Southern Smooth Snake, Coronella girondica
2014-01-17 09:24:19

The Southern smooth snake or Riccioli’s snake (Coronella girondica) is a member of the Colubridae family typically found in Southern Europe and northern Africa. The species range Europe, from Portugal and Spain, the south of France, Monaco and parts of Italy. In Africa, the mountains of Morocco, parts of Algeria to Tunisia are common ranges. Habitats vary from scrubland, woodlands, grasslands, rocky areas or plantations. The species faces threats of habitat destruction and loss mostly...

Yellow Anaconda, Eunectes notaeus
2014-01-10 21:40:31

The Eunectes notaeus is a nonvenomous anaconda commonly known as the yellow anaconda. It is exclusively found in South America. The yellow anaconda is named for its ability to swim and their dorsal scales are larger and in fewer rows. Its habitat is made up of swamps, marshes, and slow-moving streams and rivers. The species is also beginning to invade the Florida Everglades. Prey usually includes birds, fish, turtles, lizards, bird’s eggs, small mammals and the decaying fish flesh. The...

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Word of the Day
abrosia
  • Wasting away as a result of abstinence from food.
The word 'abrosia' comes from a Greek roots meaning 'not' and 'eating'.