People in India eat snakes

Snakes in India

There are many snakes in India and the most important and dangerous venomous snakes are grouped under the term "Big Four": the common sand rattle otter, the chain viper, the spectacled snake and the Indian krait. We have summarized all the characteristics and behavior and habitats of the most important venomous and strangler snakes in India below.

Spectacled snake

The spectacled snake belongs to the "real cobras" and can be found on the entire Indian subcontinent. Its scientific name "Naja" comes from Sanskrit: "Naga" means "snake" here.

It owes its German name to the glasses-shaped drawing on its neck plate. The Naja is probably the most famous cobra in India and despite the ban, it is still used by snake charmers in India as a demonstration snake.

You can find them in different habitats, from Jungle over grasslands but also in steppes and bank vegetation. The diurnal Tier is just as good a swimmer as a climber and you can usually find her in Rice growing areas looking for mice.

She is usually considered a rather shy animal and only not very aggressive. If she feels threatened, she raises her upper body and presents her clearly pronounced neck shield. Their venom paralyzes the nerves after a bite and, if left untreated, can lead to respiratory failure.

Animals of India up close and from a safe distance ...

Common sand rattle otter

The sand rattle otters belong to the family of vipers and they are mainly found in Deserts. The "common sand rattle otter" has a length of 60-70cm and a rather slim body shape. Their yellowish brown color offers them a perfect camouflage in their dry, mostly sandy surroundings.

The animal owes its name to a rattling warning sound that the snake reaches by rubbing its flank scales together. The sand rattle otter is predominant crepuscular and nocturnal and feeds mainly on mice and rats, but also on small birds and lizards.

The common sand rattle otter belongs because of its strong poison and their very aggressive behavior towards the most dangerous snakes. she is easily irritated and when threatened, it rolls up but keeps its head up so that it is ready to push at any time. From this rolled up position, it can then bite at lightning speed.

This snake is responsible for more fatal accidents than any other poisonous snake in Asia combined. Its venom is five times more intense than that of a cobra and 16 times more poisonous than that of a chain viper.

Chain viper

The chain viper also belongs to the family of vipers (Viperidae). In contrast to the sand rattle otter, however, it is mainly found in bushes and tall grass, as it lurks there for its prey.
Their body length varies greatly from individual to individual, but averages 90-120 cm. Their physique is slim and almost triangular and their basic color is orange-brown to ocher. Spread over its body, it has oval, dark-colored spots that are lined with a black border. The snake owes its name to these spots because they are spread over its body like a stringed chain.

The chain viper is also a rather aggressive, easily irritable snakewho emits a loud hiss when threatened and lifts her upper body. She injects the poison into her victim through her two retractable fangs. The poison leads to the formation of blood clots that no longer dissolve and cause severe thrombosis.

Because of their inclination to live close to people, especially in Indian Farmland, there are thousands of bite accidents with the chain viper every year.

Indian krait

Kraits belong to the venomous snake family and are widespread in Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent. There are 14 types of which the “Indian krait” is the most dangerous.
Around 30-40% of all snake bite accidents in India are caused by this snake. They are mainly found in the tropical and subtropical areas India.
The basic color is dark and shiny and is broken up by light transverse bands. she goes as crepuscular and nocturnal animal and usually hides in abandoned termite mounds during the day. The adder feeds mainly on other snakes and lizards. Your mind is rather calm and not very aggressiveHowever, she shouldn't be irritated because she has a very strong neurotoxin.

Tiger python - the strangler snake

In addition to the venomous snakes, India is also home to a large number of strangler snakes, of which the tiger python is certainly one of the most famous and impressive representatives.

The tiger pythons found in India are among the largest snakes in the world with an average length of 4-5 m. The tiger python belongs to the genus of the "real pythons" and is again divided into three subspecies:

Light Tiger Python (Python molurus molurus), Dark Tiger Python (Python molurus bivittatus), Ceylon Tiger Python (Python molurus pimbura) - only available in Sri Lanka.

The light tiger python has the largest distribution area in India. Its territory extends from Pakistan across India to Nepal. The dark tiger python is more likely to be found in the east and in India joins the area of ​​the light tiger python to the north-east.

The dark tiger python generally has a darker pattern than the light tiger python. Its basic color ranges from light brown, yellowish to greyish; whereas the light python has a rather light gray, whitish, beige basic color.

Tiger pythons feel comfortable in different habitats. Proximity to water is important. They are most commonly found in rainforests, mangrove forests, swamp lands, and cloud forests. But the animals can also be found in damp mountainous countries and in grasslands. The light tiger python also seems to get along well with dry forests and sandy areas, whereas the dark representative populates more humid land crossed by rivers. In the water, the snake can move better and more quickly and its body is completely submerged except for the snout when swimming.

The animals are active at night or at dusk and their activities depend on the ambient temperature. In the northern regions, the light python even hibernates for several months. During the hot months, they like to rest in caves, crevices or termite mounds during the day. Often they then lie partially or completely submerged in the shallow bank for hours to cool. Pythons can remain completely underwater for up to half an hour without breathing.

Anything it can overwhelm is on the Python's menu. Mammals and birds make up the largest part. The prey is located via the sense of smell and the Jacobson's organ located inside the nose. The forked tongue absorbs non-volatile molecules from the prey, which trigger certain nerve stimuli in Jacobson's organ and are processed in the brain.

The python is known as a hide hunter, curled up waiting for its prey. The prey is then killed by strangulation and devoured head first. Since the size of the prey correlates with that of the python, monkeys, gazelles and small deer are sometimes devoured by snakes 4-5 m in length.

Pythons usually live solitary and only meet at mating season. The male places his head on the back of the female to encourage them to mate. After four months, the female lays around 30-50 eggs, which she guards for three months. During this time the female does not eat any food. Once the young snakes have hatched, they are completely on their own and the mother leaves the clutch.

Not only the skin as high-quality leather, but also the flesh of the python is very popular, especially in China, India and northern Thailand. The decade-long hunt for the giant snake resulted in a drastic population decline and export was prohibited by law in India in 1977. The illegal trade continues to this day. Not only hunting, but also the increasing clear-cutting of forests and constant land fragmentation destroy the habitat of the animals. The Tiger Python is rarely found in India outside of protected areas.