Poisonous Animals

Gila Monster

Gila monster Heloderma suspectum Description: Robust, with a large head and a heavy tail. Its body is covered with beadlike scales. It is capable of storing fat against lean times when food is scarce. Its color is striking in rich blacks laced with yellow or pinkish scales. Characteristics: Not an…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Yellow Bellied Sea Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Yellow-bellied sea snake Pelamis platurus Description: Upper part of body is black or dark brown and lower part is bright yellow. Characteristics: A highly venomous snake belonging to the cobra family. This snake is truly of the pelagic species - it never leaves the water to come to shore. It…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Banded Sea Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Banded sea snake Laticauda colubrina Description: Smooth-scaled snake that is a pale shade of blue with black bands. Its oarlike tail provides propulsion in swimming. Characteristics: Most active at night, swimming close to shore and at times entering tide pools. Its venom is a very strong neurotoxin. Its victims are…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Tiger Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Tiger snake Notechis scutatus Description: Olive to dark brown above with yellowish or olive belly and crossbands. The subspecies in Tasmania and Victoria is uniformly black. Characteristics: It is the most dangerous snake in Australia. It is very common and bites many humans. It has a very potent neurotoxic venom…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Taipan Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Taipan Oxyuranus scutellatus Description: Generally uniformly olive or dark brown, with a somewhat darker brown head. Characteristics: Considered one of the most deadly snakes. It has an aggressive disposition. When aroused, it can display a fearsome appearance by flattening its head, raising it off the ground, waving it back and…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Death Adder – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Death adder Acanthophis antarcticus Description: Reddish, yellowish, or brown color with distinct dark brown crossbands. The end of its tail is black, ending in a hard spine. Characteristics: When aroused, this highly dangerous snake will flatten its entire body, ready to strike over a short distance. It is nocturnal, hiding…
Read More »

Australian Copperhead Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Australian copperhead Denisonia superba Description: Coloration is reddish brown to dark brown. A few from Queensland are black. Characteristics: Rather sluggish disposition but will bite if stepped on. When angry, rears its head a few inches from the ground with its neck slightly arched. Its venom is neurotoxic. Habitat: Swamps.…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Wagler’s Pit Viper or Temple Viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Wagler's pit viper or temple viper Trimeresurus wagleri Description: Green with white crossbands edged with blue or purple. It has two dorsal lines on both sides of its head. Characteristics: It is also known as the temple viper because certain religious cults have placed venomous snakes in their temples. Bites…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Saw Scaled Viper snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Saw-scaled viper Echis carinatus Description: Color is light buff with shades of brown, dull red, or gray. Its sides have a white or light-colored pattern. Its head usually has two dark stripes that start behind the eye and extend to the rear. Characteristics: A small but extremely dangerous viper. It…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Sand viper Cerastes vipera Description: Usually uniformly very pallid, with three rows of darker brown spots. Characteristics: A very small desert dweller that can bury itself in the sand during the day's heat. It is nocturnal, coming out at night to feed on lizards and small desert rodents. It has…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Russell's viper Vipera russellii Description: Light brown body with three rows of dark brown or black splotches bordered with white or yellow extending its entire length. Characteristics: This dangerous species is abundant over its entire range. It is responsible for more human fatalities than any other venomous snake. It is…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Rhinoceros Viper or River Jack Snake – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Rhinoceros viper or river jack Bitis nasicornis Description: Brightly colored with purplish to reddish-brown markings and black and light olive markings along the back. On its head it has a triangular marking that starts at the tip of the nose. It has a pair of long horns (scales) on the…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Puff adder Bitis arietans Description: Yellowish, light brown, or orange with chevron-shaped dark brown or black bars. Characteristics: The puff adder is the second largest of the dangerous vipers. It is one of the most common snakes in Africa. It is largely nocturnal, hunting at night and seeking shelter during…
Read More »
Animals

Dangerous animals – complete guide to deadly creatures in the wilderness

Introduction The threat from animals is less than from other parts of the environment. However, common sense tells you to avoid encounters with lions, bears, and other large or dangerous animals. You should also avoid large grazing animals with horns, hooves, and great weight. Move carefully through their environment. Caution…
Read More »
Overviews

Poisonous Plants – an overview of plant poisoning and how to avoid being poisened

Successful use of plants in a survival situation depends on positive identification. Knowing poisonous plants is as important as knowing edible plants. Plants Poisoning Plants generally poison by: Contact. This contact with a poisonous plant causes any type of skin irritation or dermatitis. Ingestion. This occurs when a person eats…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Palestinian viper Vipera palaestinae Description: Olive to rusty brown with a dark V-shaped mark on the head and a brown, zigzag band along the back. Characteristics: The Palestinian viper is closely related to the Russell's viper of Asia. Like its cousin, it is extremely dangerous. It is active and aggressive…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

Mole viper or burrowing viper – how to identify, avoid their habitat, and treatment for their bite.

Mole viper or burrowing viper Atracaspis microlepidota Description: Uniformly black or dark brown with a small, narrow head. Characteristics: A viper that does not look like one. It is small in size, and its small head does not indicate the presence of venom glands. It has a rather inoffensive disposition;…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

McMahon's viper Eristicophis macmahonii Description: Sandy buff color dominates the body, with darker brown spots on the side of the body. The nose shield is broad, aiding in burrowing. Characteristics: Very little is known about this species. It apparently is rare or seldom seen. This viper is very irritable; it…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Malayan pit viper Callaselasma rhodostoma Description: Reddish running into pink tinge toward the belly with triangular-shaped, brown markings bordered with light-colored scales. The base of the triangular-shaped markings end at the midline. It has dark brown, arrow-shaped markings on the top and each side of its head. Characteristics: This snake…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Levant viper Vipera lebetina Description: Gray to pale brown with large dark brown spots on the top of the black and a characteristic mark on top of the head. Characteristics: This viper belongs to a large group of true vipers. Like its cousins, it is large and dangerous. Its venom…
Read More »
Poisonous Animals

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

Krait Bungarus caeruleus Description: Black or bluish-black with white narrow crossbands and a narrow head. Characteristics: Kraits are found only in Asia. This snake is of special concern to man. It is deadly—about 15 times more deadly than the common cobra. It is active at night and relatively passive during…
Read More »
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…
Read More »
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…
Read More »