100 Interesting Facts About Snakes

1South Sea Company collapsion

After the collapse of the South Sea company in 1720, which bankrupted many and severely affected the economy of England, a proposal was made in parliament to place bankers in sacks filled with snakes and throw them into the River Thames.

2. Bill Haast from Florida, also known as the “Snake Man,” was bitten by poisonous snakes at least 173 times. He injected himself with snake venom every day for over 60 years to build immunity. He saved countless lives with his antibody-rich blood, and he lived to be 100.

3. The Black Mamba snake, one of the most poisonous snakes in the world, contains pain-relieving compounds called mambalgins which could be a better painkiller (and with fewer side effects) than morphine.

4. During WWII, a canine PoW name Judy protected her fellow inmates from beatings by attacking the guards. Sentenced to death for bad behavior, Judy hid out in the jungles of Sumatra and supplemented her diet with snakes and monkeys. After the war, she was awarded the Dicken Medal for bravery.

5. A man named David Jones spent 121 days in a room with 40 venomous snakes in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record of 107 days, only to be told that they no longer maintain that record after achieving it.

6Ilha da Queimada Grande

Ilha da Queimada Grande is an island that is so densely populated by poisonous snakes that the Brazilian Navy has quarantined it and a biologist once said that when on the island you are "never more than three feet from death."

7. There is an abandoned island at Disney World called Discovery island that 3 guys swam to and found preserved snakes in coke bottles and more eerie stuff.

8. All of Australia’s snakes, spiders, sharks, crocodiles, and poisonous sea creatures combined only kill 5 people per year. Horseback riding accidents kill 20 Australians per year.

9. The Ball Python is such a docile snake that if the Igbo people of Central Africa find a dead one, they will build a tiny coffin for it and give it a funeral.

10. After getting lost in the Sahara desert, a man named Mauro Prosperi tried to kill himself by slitting his wrists, he was so dehydrated that his blood clotted the wounds. Nine days later he was rescued 186 miles (299km) away and had lost 40lbs (18kg), living off his urine, bats, and snakes.

11New Zealand

There are no snakes in New Zealand

12. Male garter snakes sometimes mimic female garter snakes in order to be cuddled by other males and steal their heat, a process called 'Kleptothermy.'

13. The venom of Russell's viper is commonly used in a diagnostic laboratory test because its blood clotting properties are extremely helpful in detecting an autoimmune disorder called antiphospholipid syndrome.

14. In 1996, when Valentin Grimaldo from Texas was bitten by a coral snake, he killed the snake by biting off the snake's head and using the decapitated body as a tourniquet.

15. There is a species of snake in South East Asia commonly known as the "Flying Snake." Not only does it climb trees, but it can then glide through the air from one tree to the next, slithering its body to create lift, achieving distances of 100m, more than any other gliding animal.

16Antivenom company

The company that used to make coral snake antivenom stopped producing it in 2003, finding that its production was unprofitable. USA’s stock of coral snake antivenom expired in 2008, but the FDA has extended its expiry date ever since to keep what is left available to the public.

17. A Roman military commander named Hannibal Barca filled jars of clay with poisonous snakes and had his soldiers throw them onto enemy ships during a naval battle to incite panic and he won.

18. Hog-nosed snakes will feign death by rolling on their back, and when rolled upright will roll back again as if to insist they're really dead.

19. Snake anti-venom is made from the neutralizing antibodies that a horse produces when it is injected with snake venom

20. Adult California ground squirrels have a protein in their blood that allows them to survive rattlesnake bites. The squirrels also heat up their tail and wave them to let the rattlesnake know they are aware of them since rattlesnakes have infrared vision. They don't do this with other snakes.

21Southern Copperhead  

The venom of Southern Copperhead, one most poisonous snake, has been found to contain a protein that halts the growth of cancer cells and stops the migration of tumors.

22. Rattlesnakes are evolving not to rattle. Previously, they rattled to avoid being stepped on by hoofed animals. Now they have learned to remain hidden and quiet to avoid being hunted by humans.

23. Japan makes a particular type of booze that is made by drowning a Pit Viper in alcohol. The snake is put on ice until it passes out, at which point it is gutted and sewed up. When the viper is thawed, it awakens and quickly dies in an aggressive striking pose.

24. One bite from the snake called Boomslang can cause you to bleed from all openings in your body.

25. Australia is the only continent where venomous snakes actually outnumber the non-venomous ones.

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