When you look out for the most feared wildlife in the animal kingdom, snakes are surely the most vicious predators. You must have seen the reptile on the wildlife shows on television but if you have ever encountered it, you would be quite aware about the fear that it brings out. The snakes are included in the category of reptiles. There are more than 2,900 species of snakes spread all over the world. Among all these species, only 600 are considered as Most venomous snake. These venomous species are further divided into neurotoxic, hemotoxic and myotoxic. Let’s have a look at 15 of the most venomous snakes found across the globe.
The venom of the snake is the highly modified saliva that contains toxic acids. The creature uses this venom to kill the prey or even to defend from the threat. The venom is injected from the fangs and it is present in the glands that are located in the head of the snake. Venoms contain more than 20 different compounds, mostly proteins and polypeptides. These with toxic compounds serve to immobilize the prey animal. Once entered the body the venom affects on various biological functions including blood coagulation, blood pressure regulation, and transmission of the nervous or muscular impulse.
Russell Viper:-The snake is mostly found in the Indian sub-continent and the surrounding areas like the Malaysian Peninsula, Southern China, Sumatra, Java, Borneo and surrounding islands. The snake can easily be identified with three rows of black or brown splotches having white or yellow border. The length of the snake is bout one meter normally but can also grow to twice this length. The snake is responsible for relatively more human deaths than any other types of venomous snake. Its venom is of hemotoxin type, which is a powerful coagulant, causing damage to blood cells and tissues.
Black Mamba:-This snake is the prominent predator of the African continent as is regarded as Africa’s most feared venomous snake. The snake can be prominently seen in Africa’s open woodlands and African savannah. The biggest reason behind its fear is highly toxic and notoriously aggressive nature of the reptile. It is known as world’s fastest land snake with the top speed of 16-19 km/hr. The snake appears uniformly black or brown. Its average length is about 4.3 meters.
Puff Adder:-The snake is found in savannah and grasslands of Morocco and western Arabia throughout Africa except for the Sahara and rain forest regions. The snake has an average length of about one meter and can weigh about 6-7kgs. Mostly the species are nocturnal, they rarely forage actively and their prey includes mammals, birds, amphibians, and lizards. The venom has cytotoxic effects and is one of the most toxic of any viper species. This species is responsible for more fatalities than any other African snake.
Forest Cobra:- The snake is commonly known as the black cobra and is a native reptile of the African continent. The length of an average adult is 4.6 to 7.2ft, but they may attain lengths of 2.7 meters (8.9ft). Forest cobras will feed on a wide variety of prey, including amphibians, fish, other snakes, monitors and other lizards, birds’ eggs, rodents, and other small mammals. The venom of this cobra is a postsynaptic neurotoxin and bites result in severe neurotoxicity.
Tiger Snake:- Tiger snakes are a type of venomous snake found in southern regions of Australia, including its coastal islands and Tasmania. The specie has a flat, blunt head which is slightly distinct from a robust body. The average length is 0.9m, with a maximum length of 1.2 m, but has been recorded at 2.0 m. Tiger snake venoms possess potent neurotoxins, coagulants, haemolysins and myotoxins. After the snake bite the person feels pain in the foot and neck region, tingling, numbness, and sweating, followed by a fairly rapid onset of breathing difficulties and paralysis.
Desert Horned Viper:- The snake is mainly found in the Sahara desert of the African continent and also in parts of Middle East. The snake got the name from its easily recognizable pair of horns above the eyes. The length of the snake is approximately 30–60 cm but can grow up to 85 cm in length. The females are generally longer then the males. The color pattern consists of a yellowish, pale grey, pinkish, reddish or pale brown ground color. The venom is not very toxic, although it usually causes swelling, haemorrhage, necrosis, nausea, vomiting and haematuria.
Common Krait:- The snake is commonly known as Indian krait as it is mostly found in the Indian subcontinent. The average length is 0.9 m (3.0ft), but they can grow to 1.75 m. the snakes are generally black or bluish black, with about 40 thin, white crossbars which may be indistinct or absent anteriorly. The males are bit longer than the females. These snakes prey on other snakes, lizards, frogs, rats, and field mice. The common krait’s venom consists mostly of powerful neurotoxins which induce muscle paralysis.
Bloomsang:- The word bloom means tree and sang means snake, giving the snake its common name treesnake. The average adult boomslang is 5¼ feet in total length, but some exceed 6 feet in length. The fangs are 3–5 mm. long with the diameter being nearly 0.5 mm. Boomslangs are able to open their jaws up to 170 degrees when biting. The venom of the boomslang is primarily a hemotoxin and it disables the blood clotting process and the victim may well die as a result of internal and external bleeding.