Snakes – Quick Facts

There are around 3000 snake species in the world, and about 375 of these are venomous. From enormous ones like the python, which can swallow animals as large as a deer whole, to snakes that are just a few inches long, snakes can be found in all types of habitats. While some climb trees, others live underground, and still others are found in waters of lakes and even seas. Given below are some more fascinating facts about snakes.

  • The word snake is derived from Old English snaca, meaning to crawl or to creep.
  • Snakes descended from lizards.
  • A snake’s vision is adequate although not sharp, allowing them to only distinguish light from dark, and track movements.
  • Some snakes kill their prey by injecting venom before eating it, while others swallow their prey whole and alive.
  • A spitting cobra can spit venom at a perceived target about 5-7 feet away.
  • The venom of a king cobra, the world’s largest poisonous snake is capable of killing an elephant.
  • All snakes are born swimmers. They swim by moving their body in lateral, wavelike movements, which start from their head continuing down to their tail.
  • Snakes sleep with their eyes open, as they lack eyelids and coil up their body.
  • After a heavy meal, snakes tend to sleep for days or even weeks. In winters, they even fall into deep sleep for months.
  • Most snakes usually reproduce once in a year. Sea snakes can mate only once every 10 years!
  • Black mamba is the fastest snake in the world. It is capable of moving at the speed of 20 km per hour!

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