(Also on Sb)
Caine, Fleur du Mal says
4 October 2011 at 1:29 am
Father Ogvorbis: It's Good for You. It Builds Character says
4 October 2011 at 1:56 am
Horny little viper, neh?
chigau () says
Genus name Bitis?
Glen Davidson says
4 October 2011 at 2:02 am
I’ve kicked the habit.
Shed my skin.
This is the new stuff
And, well, that’s the old stuff.
4 October 2011 at 2:11 am
Science blog cross linky:
Why do some snakes have horns?
4 October 2011 at 2:19 am
Does it strike anyone else as ironic that the ad that I see is for ChristianMingle.com?
4 October 2011 at 3:06 am
Lovely gaboon viper. One of the deadliest — though I’m pretty sure they’re fairly docile, so you’d have to really work hard to piss them off or frighten them into striking. I believe they have the longest fangs of any snake species — so even if they didn’t have venom, a bite would hurt like hell.
I’m fascinated by vipers, and thankfully have only had one close encounter with a non-captive one. A nice big bull timber rattlesnake sunning itself along a hiking trail. Turned a corner and there he was. That’ll get your heart racing.
4 October 2011 at 3:29 am
That’ll get your heart racing.
Yeah. But I can top that. When I was four years old, I discovered a sidewinder hiding behind a can of Shasta lemon-lime soda in our refrigerator. He wasn’t real energetic (that’s the point of putting him in the frig (though he was supposed to be in a coffee can! (must have escaped before he got too cold))), though. I did have to change my pants. Both pair.
Sam Salerno says
4 October 2011 at 4:12 am
Wait a minute. Why is it “Mary’s” Monday Metazoan?
4 October 2011 at 4:20 am
Why is it “Mary’s” Monday Metazoan?
Mary, as in Mary Myers, PZ’s Trophy Wife™. She chooses them and posts them.
4 October 2011 at 4:52 am
Goodness but I love snakes. I know, this doesn’t much contribute to the discussion, but…Goodness I love snakes.
Samantha Vimes, Chalkboard Monitor says
4 October 2011 at 6:48 am
Ogvorbis, who refrigerated the snake?
The Rat King says
4 October 2011 at 7:25 am
Ahhh, there is no snake prettier than the Gaboon… Hunt around for a photo of their full glory – all gorgeous autumn shades.
Yes indeed; the Gaboon Viper has the longest fangs of any snake – up to 2 inches of hypodermic horror, and absolutely massive venom glands that deliver a very nasty necrotic venom. Their strike is amongst the very fastest of any snake, and it is their habit to hang on to what they bite – a mongoose wouldn’t stand a chance.
Heaviest of the viper family, though they are only about 4 feet long fully grown.
Gorgeous animals. If they didn’t have a venomous bite I would so want to keep them as living sculptures…
4 October 2011 at 8:49 am
Snakes. Why’d it have to be snakes?
4 October 2011 at 11:32 am
Whoa, man. It’s like, it wasn’t there, and then I stared for awhile, and then all of a sudden it was there.
Nancy New, Queen of your Regulatory Nightmare says
4 October 2011 at 11:45 am
cristopherallen@11 Goodness I love snakes.
Me, too, thanks especially to a herpatologist-student teacher I had for 8 weeks in 7th grade science. That’s an utterly gorgeous viper!
A neurobiologist friend of mine always said frogs were the best pets because you could just put them in the fridge to hibernate when you went on vacation. Ogvorbis, I second the “why was the snake in the fridge” question–just to slow him down for safer handling?
4 October 2011 at 12:01 pm
Just blendin’ in, bein’ cool
Looks like its pretty *hot* to me!
Snakes needin’ heat and all & the rocks look kinda well sun-warmed too.
@10. Caine, Fleur du Mal : (4 October 2011 at 4:20 am)
Thanks for that info. Was wondering about that myself.
@7. Kevin :
Yeah, that’s happened to me a handful times with brown snakes (at least I think that’s what they were) here in Oz.
Once when out walking a dog – luckily a very obedient Labrador. Saw it sunning itself on the trail ahead of us stopped and froze – and shouted to the dog to do the same – “STAY!” at maximum volume. The snake slithered off and, after a short wait, we walked on. Happened to me & my mates a few times when we were kids too.
The drill is pretty simple : make lots of noise, stomp the ground a bit when walking in likely snake habitat. They’ll move on. Why would they waste their venom on us unless forced to? They can’t eat us so just keep an eye out and let ‘em be.
In many years of walking the bush I’ve only encountered snakes a few times esp. in that dog walking reserve. In fact just that once for there in decades of dogs talks almost every day. (Watiparinga reserve if folks are curious.)
Usual law of nature – if you leave it alone, it’ll leave you alone too – but be careful and observant.
4 October 2011 at 12:07 pm
Gaboon viper or Gabon viper .. hmm ..? [Checks wikipedia]
Okay, Gaboon viper it is, after all :
For those who are wondering how bad brown snakes are :
has the wiki-answer for ya.
4 October 2011 at 12:09 pm
Very cool snake!
My son was making homework (third grade) and he was in the middle of a wee analysis of Louise Bourgeouis’ huge spider-sculpture ‘Maman’. One of the questions he was supposed to answer in his homework was: “If your own mother was an animal, which animal would she then be?” My son wrote: “A snake”. Next question on the page was “Explain why”. My son wrote “Because she’s sweet, efficient and patient”
4 October 2011 at 12:17 pm
At the time, we lived at Death Valley National Monument (which shows how long ago this was — it is now a National Park). The snake was caught in the housing area, put in a ventilated coffee can, and put in our refrigerator to make it calm down by my Dad and another ranger. Usually, early the following morning, the snake was decanted to a styrofoam cooler, taken to a quiet part of the desert, and released.
Stacy L Mason says
4 October 2011 at 1:27 pm
Handsome serpent, lots of interesting textures and contours.
Admittedly, some part of me is demanding to do the elffuhS ylruC at maximum speed and minimum dignity.
4 October 2011 at 1:46 pm
My son was making homework (third grade) and he was in the middle of a wee analysis of Louise Bourgeouis’ huge spider-sculpture ‘Maman’. One of the questions he was supposed to answer in his homework was: “If your own mother was an animal, which animal would she then be?”
What do they mean by “if”? Obviously the correct answer is “she is an animal, and she’s human”.
4 October 2011 at 1:51 pm
Moggie: you’re absolutely right. I’ll make him correct his answer to: “If my mother was ANOTHER animal …” :-D
4 October 2011 at 2:31 pm
My son’s first “science fair” project in Kindergarten was a report on the Gaboon viper. He developed a fascination with it from zoo school — a program for pre-schoolers at our local zoo.
When we were researching the report, we stumbled upon online communities of people who keep a variety of venomous snakes as pets. Here’s a report about a gaboon viper kept as a pet that killed its owner: http://animal.discovery.com/videos/fatal-attractions-gaboon-viper-kills-its-owner.html.
4 October 2011 at 3:12 pm
Fun fact: Snakes don’t have ears.
Sorta makes that whole talking snake story sound kinda silly, doesn’t it? Of course, that particular talking snake apparently also had legs.
4 October 2011 at 3:32 pm
I wonder – is the camoflauge effect better or worse in 2D v. 3D?
4 October 2011 at 3:43 pm
Snakes don’t have ears.
Sure they do. They lack external ears, and even external ear openings, but they have perfectly good inner ears, including cochleas (the organ of hearing), and use mostly their jaw bones to pick up the vibrations they ‘hear’.
4 October 2011 at 5:39 pm
I love snakes. They’re beautiful and elegant. They’re like cats with scales.