Fang Facts! - Those questions you wanted to ask and their answers.

Which are the venomous snakes found in India?

common cobra

There are four common venomous snakes found in India. They are Common
Cobra (Naja naja)
, Common Krait ( Bunguraus caeruleus), Russell’s viper
( Daboia russelii)
& Saw Scaled Viper (Echis carinatus). They are known as
the “big four” of India. They are not the only species which are venomous, but
are also found commonly throughout India. They are widely distributed across
the country. There other venomous snakes like the King cobra (Ophiophagus
hannah
)
, Hump Nosed Pit Viper (Hypnale hypnale), Banded Krait (Bunguraus
faciatus
)
are also found in India. The distribution of these snakes is limited to
certain geographic regions and human deaths due to their bites are rare.

Are Vemomous snake bites curable?

common cobra  - naja naja bite - snake bite
Swelling of the hand after the bite of a common cobra . Riyaz Khoja

The bite by a venomous snake is a medical emergency and can be treated
successfully in hospitals. In India, Polyvalent Anti-venom is used to treat snake
bites and it is available in district level hospitals and many private hospitals.
All snakes are not venomous and precautions should be taken before treating
a patient with anti-venom. It is critical to reach the patient to the hospital
without any delay. Proper first aid such as pressure band and calming down
the patient, limited body movements etc. will ensure that the spread of the
venom is minimized.

Which are the most common non-venomous snakes found In India?

There are more than 270 species of snakes found in India and only a few
of them are venomous enough to cause harm to a human being. We can
classify the snakes as venomous (can cause probable death to a human being if
bitten) mildly venomous (their venom is potent only to kill small prey animals)
and non – venomous (they don’t have any venom or even venom glands).
The Common Rat snake (Ptyas mucosa), Checkered Keelback (Xenochrophis
piscator
)
, are the two common non-venomous snakes found in India.

What is a Snake’s Diet?

Snakes are carnivores by nature. Their diet consists of a wide variety of
organisms, such as rodents, (rats, mice, squirrels etc.), birds, frogs, fish and
even other snakes! The food preference differs from species to species and
the abundance of prey in their habitat. The King Cobra’s menu mainly consists
of other snakes. In fact its scientific name Ophiophagus hannah means “snake
eating snake “. The Common Krait is also another snake eating snake, which
even takes smaller Kraits (cannibalism).

Snakes are good pest controllers as they kill a large number of harmful rodents
across the globe and are an integral part of the eco system as prey and
predators. Checkered Keelback, Dog Faced Water Snakes and Sea Snakes are
examples of snakes which survive mainly on fish or amphibians. Once a snake
has filled its stomach sufficiently, it may rest for weeks and even months till
the food is completely digested. Pythons usually take down large prey such
as deer and medium sized mammals as food and ‘rest’ for months before they
crawl out for another hunting trip. The Indian Egg-Eater is a specialized egg-
eating snake which is morphologically designed to swallow eggs.