Learning About Snakes

Discussion in 'Other Advanced Survival Skills' started by Pragmatist, Jan 15, 2020.

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  1. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    https://www.csmonitor.com/World/Asi...s-Steve-Irwin-wants-to-make-snakes-less-scary


    Good morning all,

    Article about a Thai snake expert teaching about snakes.

    I don't think the late Steve Irwin knew about poisonous sea snakes. He didn't know about sting rays.

    As an aside, about 15-20 years ago here in Virginia, the cost to treat a poisonous snake bite was ~ 16, 000. $2K for the professional services and hospital visit and ~ $14K for the antidote serum. After a colleague here experienced the aforesaid, I called the state's poison control center about sources for the snake serums. The young guy answering the phone at 3 AM was a Master's degree candidate in one of the pharma fields. He got me started on my research and learned matter was like other related matters: highly controlled.

    It's not illegal (w/ 2 exception) to kill snakes in Virginia. I've got 'em all over here, to include the poisonous Copperhead snake. When I see one of these creatures, I talk to them with my same line, season after season: "Snake, get the hell outta here or I call Moses and Ricky Tiki Tavi (Mongoose).

    ...

    Snakebite kit
    Plan to keep snake for identification of needed RX pharma
    Notepaper
     
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  2. Snyper

    Snyper Master Survivalist
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    He knew about them.
    His death was a freak occurrence.

    There's no need for any "snakebite kit", and attempting to catch or kill a snake is how many bites happen.

    These days most everyone has a camera on them.
    Take a picture if possible and simply get to a Dr ASAP.

    Few die from snakebites in Western countries if they just seek immediate help.
     
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  3. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    There are only three snakes that are a danger to adults in the USA. They are all easily identified and usually easy to avoid with the exception of the Copperhead that is, fortunately, the least poisonous. A copperhead will freeze and if you step on it it will try to bote you. They don't warn and so I kill them if they are in my yard. Kids don't watch where they step so the copperheads are not welcome in my yard.

    The coral snake is a gentle creature that has no fangs as such and if you can resist shoving a finger in its mouth is no real danger. The Rattlesnake and the Watermoccasin are both of the nature to warn you if they see you coming. Most bites come from people trying to mess with them or people that make ignorant mistakes like stepping over a log without looking over it first.

    If a rattler sees you he will rattle and warn you off. A water moccasin is called a cottonmouth because the inside of their mouth is snow white. They will throw open that mouth and strike at you long before you are close enough to them to get bit. That white mouth is their warning flag. Like the Rattlesnake, there are rules about where you put your feet and hands when you are in snake territory.

    I have lived in a snake-infested place most of my life and have never been struck. I have been struck AT more times than I can count. I won't say that it doesn't scare the crap out of you when a big snake suddenly makes itself known to you but if you don't panic and back off they will do the same most of the time. If a snake has a wide triangular head or slit pupils like a cat in their eyes they are probably poisonous. If their head is round or their pupils are round they are not poisonous.
     
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  4. Snyper

    Snyper Master Survivalist
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    I once put both feet in the middle of a Copperhead about 3-4 feet long.

    That's when I discovered I had the ability to jump 5 feet straight up and 8 feet to one side in the blink of an eye.

    The only reason I wasn't bitten is the weather was cool and he was moving slowly.
     
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  5. poltiregist

    poltiregist Master Survivalist
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    To determine if a snake is poisonous look at his eyes . If the pupils are round , it is not poisonous . If the pupils are slanted it is poisonous . Poisonous snakes have two upper fangs . Non poisonous snakes have rows of teeth but no fangs . ---Oops just saw where I repeated some of the same things Tex said .
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
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  6. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning Snyper,

    My snakebite kit is not a Boy Scout razor blade and suction pump in a belt pouch.

    My care-giver (not Medicare-funded) is an M.D. although not licensed to practice in Virginia, except allowed during declared emergencies. Believe other states use this same law/regulation.

    We've got some RX serums and the related anti-infection medicines.
     
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  7. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning TexDanm,

    True, but all snakebites must be attended to.

    The big problem now is that we have a large and fast-growing older population with the related weakened immune systems and various aging ailments. Even the non-poisonous cause the infections resulting in complications if not addressed.

    Still, I do 2 things:
    1. Call Moses and Ricki Tiki Tavi, the mongoose (Rudledge Kipling story)
    2. I spray my work area with ammonia where these creatures allow me to trespass on their land.

    As an aside;

    For the prepper/survivalist, I teach to carry one's immunization record (CDC 731 pamphlet is best IMO [but being phased out]) in a ZipLoc type of pouch in front pocket AND place on top any recent receipt from eg CVS/Rite Aid, Walgreens, where one recently got a flu shot, a DPT update shot ... any shot that weakens the immune system. If in GOOD evac mode and unconscious, some Responder will know how best to treat the snakebite because of the victim/patient's pre-existing weakened immunize system.
     
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  8. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning Poltiregist,

    2 presumptions must be addressed:

    1. good visibility usually meaning daylight
    2. good vision
     
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  9. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    we've only got one poisonous snake in the UK and that's the Adder and i'm not sure even that would kill you.
     
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  10. Snyper

    Snyper Master Survivalist
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    Snakes aren't "poisonous". Most are perfectly safe to eat.

    They are "venomous" though, since they can inject you with toxic substances.

    https://www.britannica.com/story/whats-the-difference-between-venomous-and-poisonous
     
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  11. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning Snyper,

    Irony of ironies. Poltiregist is a retired biologist.

    Obviously he knows his audience here has few biologists.

    I do much volunteer field work with medical doctors, dentists, paramedics and - animal control officers. It's common enough to hear the use of the 2 terms as synonyms.

    It's not just the poisonous versus venomous terms. Consider the terms "mash" and "swamp". They do not have complete, definitive definitions. The engineers use one definition and the topographers use another. At one time, in one professional segment of our society, one term was for fresh water and other term was seawater or brackish water. Still, we now have "wetlands".

    There's even a change of meanings to terms like "aquatic" and "marine". At one time, when I was a "user" of maps, charts and some briefings (actually for coffee breaks; I already knew the talking points), "aquatic" meant fresh water. Marine meant seawater.

    /s/ Prag

    First in piece
    First in war
    Last in knowledge of homonyms
     
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  12. varuna

    varuna Tree killer & a cat person
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    IMHO The best way to learn about snakes is to eat them before they eat you (if they big enough) or attack you.

    Also keep in mind snake venom came in several flavours, and each of them require specific treatment. Although there is certain species such as King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) have sufficiently lethal venom that will kill adult human in just few minutes, and the worse of all due to their size they don't typically intimidated by the presence of a hairless bipedal monkey.
     
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