Poisonous Animals

King cobra – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

King cobra Ophiophagus hannah Description: Uniformly olive, brown, or green with ring-like cross-bands of black. Characteristics: Although it is the largest venomous snake in the world and it has a disposition to go with this honor, it causes relatively few bites on humans. It appears to have a degree of…
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Poisonous Animals

Horned desert viper – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Horned desert viper Cerastes cerastes Description: Pale buff color with obscure markings and a sharp spine (scale) over each eye. Characteristics: As with all true vipers that live in the desert, it finds refuge by burrowing in the heat of the day, coming out at night to feed. It is…
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Poisonous Animals

Habu pit viper – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Habu pit viper Trimeresurus flavoviridis Description: Light brown or olive-yellow with black markings and a yellow or greenish-white belly. Characteristics: This snake is responsible for biting many humans, and its bite could be fatal. It is an irritable species ready to defend itself. Its venom is hemotoxic, causing pain and…
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Poisonous Animals

Green tree pit viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Green tree pit viper Trimeresurus gramineus Description: Uniform bright or dull green with light yellow on the facial lips. Characteristics: A small arboreal snake of some importance, though not considered a deadly species. It is a dangerous species because most of its bites occur in the head, shoulder, and neck…
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Poisonous Animals

Green mamba snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Green mamba Dendraspis angusticeps Description: Most mambas are uniformly bright green over their entire body. The black mamba, the largest of the species, is uniformly olive to black. Characteristics: The mamba is the most dreaded snake species of Africa. Treat it with great respect. It is considered one of the…
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Poisonous Animals

Gaboon viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Gaboon viper Bitis gabonica Description: Pink to brown with a vertebral series of elongated yellowish or light brown spots connected by hourglass-shaped markings on each side. It has a dark brown stripe behind each eye. This dangerous viper is almost invisible on the forest floor. A (6-foot-long) Gaboon viper could…
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Poisonous Animals

Habu Pit Viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Habu Pit Viper Naja haje Description: Yellowish, dark brown, or black uniform top with brown cross-bands. Its head is sometimes black. Characteristics: It is extremely dangerous. It is responsible for many human deaths. Once aroused or threatened, it will attack and continue the attack until it feels an escape is…
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Poisonous Animals

Cobra snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Common cobra or Asiatic cobra Naja naja Description: Usually slate gray to brown overall. The back of the hood may or may not have a pattern. Characteristics: A very common species responsible for many deaths each year. When aroused or threatened, the cobra will lift its head off the ground…
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Poisonous Animals

Bush viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Bush viper Atheris squamiger Description: Often called leaf viper, its color varies from ground colors of pale green to olive, brown, or rusty brown. The viper uses its prehensile tail to secure itself to branches. Characteristics: An arboreal species that often comes down to the ground to feed on small…
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Poisonous Animals

Boomslang snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Boomslang Dispholidus typus Description: Coloration varies but is generally green or brown, which makes it very hard to see in its habitat. Characteristics: Will strike if molested. Its venom is hemotoxic; even small amounts cause severe hemorrhaging, making it dangerous to man. Habitat: Found in forested areas. It will spend…
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Poisonous Animals

Ursini’s viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Ursini's viper Vipera ursinii Description: The common adder, long-nosed adder, and Ursini's viper basically have the same coloration and dorsal zigzag pattern. The exception among these adders is that the common adder and Ursini's viper lack the projection of tiny scales on the tip of the nose. Characteristics: These little…
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Poisonous Animals

Pallas’ viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Pallas' viper Agkistrodon halys Description: Coloration is gray, tan, or yellow, with markings similar to those of the American copperhead. Characteristics: This snake is timid and rarely strikes. Its venom is hemotoxic but rarely fatal. Habitat: Found in open fields, hillsides, and farming regions. Length: Average 45 centimeters (18 inches),…
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Poisonous Animals

Long-nosed adder snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Long-nosed adder Vipera ammodytes Description: Coloration is gray, brown, or reddish with a dark brown or black zigzag pattern running the length of its back. A dark stripe is usually found behind each eye. Characteristics: A small snake commonly found in much of its range. The term "long-nosed" comes from…
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Poisonous Animals

Common adder

Common adder Vipera berus Description: Its color is variable. Some adult specimens are completely black, while others have a dark zigzag pattern running along the back. Characteristics: The common adder is a small true viper that has a short temper and often strikes without hesitation. Its venom is hemotoxic, destroying…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Tropical rattlesnake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Tropical rattlesnake Crotalus durissus or Crotalus terrificus Description: The Tropical Rattlesnake is also known as South American Rattlesnake or Neotropical Rattlesnake.  Coloration is light to dark brown with a series of darker rhombs or diamonds bordered by a buff color but can vary depending on the sub species.  Some sub…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Fer-de-lance snake – the most feared snake on the planet – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Fer-de-lance Bothrops atrox or Bothrops lanceolatus The Fer-de-lance (also known as Lancehead) are several closely related species in this group. All are very considered to be very aggressive and dangerous to man and one of the most feared snakes on the planet. Description: Lancehead or Fer-de-lance snakes have highly variable…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Jumping viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Jumping viper Bothrops nummifer (or Atropoides) Description: It has a stocky, thick body. Its ground color varies from grayish-brown to gray or reddish-brown with dark brown or black dorsal blotches.  It has no pattern on its head.  The head is large, with small eyes and broad, round snout. Characteristics: It…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Mojave (Mohave) rattlesnake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Mojave rattlesnake Crotalus scutulatus   Description: The Mojave Rattlesnake’s (also known as Mohave Rattlesnake, Mojave Green, Mojave Diamond Rattlesnake, and Mojave Rattler) entire body is a cream or sandy color, sometimes pale green (depending upon its surroundings) with darker diamond-shaped markings bordered by lighter-colored scales and black bands around the…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Eyelash pit viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Eyelash pit viper Bothrops schlegeli   Description: Eyelash pit vipers (also known as Eyelash Mountain Viper, Schlegel’s Palm Viper,Horned Palm Snake, and Eyelash Palmpitviper) are a venomous pit viper that may be identified by 2-3 sharp, spiny scales over each eye giving them the appearance of eyelashes. It it were…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Eastern diamondback rattlesnake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Eastern diamondback rattlesnake Crotalus adamanteus Description: Dark brown or black, outlined by a row of cream or yellowish scales. Ground color is olive to brown. Characteristics: The largest venomous snake in the United States. Large snakes can have fangs that measure centimeters (1 inch) in a straight line. This species…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Cottonmouth snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Cottonmouth Agkistrodon piscivorus Description: Also known as water moccasin, swamp moccasin or black moccasin.  Colors are variable. Adults are uniformly olive brown or black. The young and subadults are strongly crossbanded with dark brown. Characteristics: These dangerous semiaquatic snakes closely resemble harmless water snakes that have the same habitat. Therefore,…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Coral snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Coral snake Micrurus fulvius Description: The Coral Snake is colorfully marked with rings that are bright blacks, reds, and yellows in color.  Some of the colored bands, particularly the red bands, may be speckled.  Other non-poisonous species have similar colors and markings including the Scarlet Snake and the Milk Snake. …
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Poisonous Animals

All about the Bushmaster snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Bushmaster Lachesis muta Description: The Bushmaster body color is pale brown or pinkish, with a series of large bold dark brown or black blotches extending along the body. It can grow to a length of 3 meters (10 feet), making it the longest viper snake in the world, and weighs…
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Poisonous Animals

All about the American copperhead snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

American copperhead Agkistrodon contortrix Description: Copperhead snakes, also known as death adder, highland moccasin, red snake, and oak snake,  have a chestnut color that dominates overall, with darker crossbands of rich browns that grow darker towards the edges and become narrower on top and widen at the bottom.  Their pale…
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