Posts tagged reptile.
Unfff~ The colour contrast is gorgeous!
Triple sec - 2012 male Extreme Hypo Honduran Milksnake (lampropeltis triangulum hondurensis) produced by Doug Mong.
This kid never ceases to impress in person, he’s going to make one awesome adult.
Jasmine (hypermelanistic anery Long Tail Boa - boa constrictor longicauda) shed this morning and was looking lovely.
I snapped a few pictures and then she got cranky because I’d woken her up to clean her tub and she didn’t want to be bothered (not sure why my camera is growling in the video).
I got tagged by a five-foot-long BCI at work today and thought I’d make it a teachable moment. For anyone afraid of snakes because they can bite, this is what you’re worried about. A few pinpricks and a scratch.
It’s really no big deal! Just slap on some neosporin and you’ll be good to go.
You should really be much more worried about dog and cat bites than snake bites!
This is a very good point to make. I have been bitten by a pet snake only once - a Children’s python (Antaresia childreni), when I was in eighth grade. She’d been off her food for a couple of weeks so she was probably starving. I put my hand in her cage to clean it; she tagged me and instantly let go, I assume recognizing that my hand was not in fact a delicious thawed rodent. The bite marks were mere surface scratches, and while I was startled, I was quickly distracted by my observations of the interestingly-placed pinpricks - who knew that snakes had teeth in the middle of their mouths!?
Because their lower jaws are a single, intact bone, mammals have some of the strongest bites in the animal kingdom. In general (obviously excluding venomous snake species), mammal bites are the ones that really hurt.
Ah, yes. Snakes have five teeth-bearing bones in their skull: the usual maxilla (upper jaw) and the mandible (lower jaw), as well as the pre-maxilla, palatine, and pterygoid. I made some diagrams for the typical “colubrid”* dentition using one of the scans that I made for my thesis. The skull proportions are very different from that of a boa, but the layout is generally the same.
The complete skull:
*Historically, Colubridae was a term used for a large and diverse family of snakes that don’t quite fit into the other snake families (Elapidae, Viperidae, etc). Pyron et al. (2013) has since clarified the situation a little by splitting it into two families: Colubridae and Lamprophiidae. The species in the image is actually a lamprophiid snake, but colubrid is still commonly used by laypeople because who in the right mind would read a 53-page document on intricacies of Squamata systematics? (The answer is me.)
Pyron, R.A., Burbrink, F.T. & Wiens, J.J. 2013. A phylogeny and revised classification of Squamata, including 4161 species of lizards and snakes. BMC Evolutionary Biology 13: 1–53.