Snake Current Events

Snake Current Events, Snake News Articles.
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New insights may help protect against snake venom toxicity
New research may be useful for protecting against the toxic effects of snake venom. (2017-04-20)

Squirrels use snake scent
California ground squirrels and rock squirrels chew up rattlesnake skin and smear it on their fur to mask their scent from predators, according to a new study by researchers at UC-Davis. (2007-12-19)

Snake bites should not be underestimated, say experts
Life threatening snake bites are uncommon in the UK but can happen, especially in children, and should not be underestimated, says an expert in this week's BMJ. Antivenom, the only specific antidote is underused in the UK. (2005-11-24)

Australia has a new venomous snake -- And it may already be threatened
The ink has not yet dried on a scientific paper describing a new species of snake, yet the reptile may already be in danger of extinction due to mining. A team of biologists led by The University of Queensland's Associate Professor Bryan Fry discovered a new species of bandy-bandy snake at Weipa on the west coast of the Cape York Peninsula. (2018-07-16)

Unique feeding behavior discovered for snakes
Snakes are known to swallow their prey whole, which limits the size of what they can eat. Now scientists have discovered that a snake can tear apart its prey. This snake loops its body around a crab to hold one end while using its mouth to pull off legs or rip the crab's body into pieces, which appears to be based on a unique behavior rather than newly derived physical traits. (2002-07-10)

Why tiger snakes are on a winner
Australian tiger snakes have 'hit the jackpot' because prey cannot evolve resistance to their venom. While that may sound foreboding, University of Queensland School of Biological Sciences expert Associate Professor Bryan Fry said this discovery had medical benefit for humans. (2017-08-21)

Global failure to act on snake bite costs thousands of lives each year
Urgent action is needed to ensure that effective and affordable treatments for snake bite reach vulnerable populations across Africa, Asia and Papua New Guinea, argues an expert in The BMJ this week. (2015-10-27)

Visualizing danger from songbird warning calls
Kyoto University researcher finds that a small songbird, the Japanese tit (Parus minor), can retrieve a visual image of a predator from specific alarm calls. (2018-01-29)

Detecting the snake in the grass
Adults and very young children apparently have an innate ability to very quickly detect the presence of a snake from among a variety of nonthreatening objects and creatures such as a caterpillar, flower or toad, according to a new study by psychologists at the University of Virginia. (2008-03-03)

Invasive snakes 'hitchhiking' on planes
A team of international scientists has discovered why brown tree snakes have become one of the most successful invasive species. The research team, led by University of Queensland scientists, has been studying why a type of cat-eyed snake has been so effective at devastating native bird populations on the island of Guam. (2018-09-25)

Discovery of a water snake that startles fish in a way that makes them flee into its jaws
Forget the old folk tales about snakes hypnotizing their prey. The tentacled snake from South East Asia has developed a more effective technique. The small water snake has found a way to startle its prey so that the fish turn toward the snake's head to flee instead of turning away. (2009-06-18)

Science saving man's best friend from deadly snake bites
Australia is home to 10 of the most venomous snakes in the world and thousands of dogs are bitten each year in Australia. The number that die is set to reduce significantly thanks to a new anti-venom developed by CSIRO. (2016-07-08)

Wildlife Conservation Society announces new snake species
The Wildlife Conservation Society announced the discovery of a spectacularly colored snake from a remote area of Tanzania in East Africa. (2012-01-09)

Persian dwarf snake consists of 6 species, scientists discover
The Persian dwarf snake is wrongly classified as one species, scientists say. New research shows it is composed of six different species, a finding which might be important for the conservation of the snake. (2015-11-23)

Why cats have more lives than dogs when it comes to snakebite
Cats are twice as likely to survive a venomous snakebite than dogs, and the reasons behind this strange phenomenon have been revealed by University of Queensland research. The research team, led by Ph.D. student Christina Zdenek and Associate Professor Bryan Fry, compared the effects of snake venoms on the blood clotting agents in dogs and cats, hoping to help save the lives of our furry friends. (2020-05-18)

Snakes evolve a magnetic way to be resistant to venom
Certain snakes have evolved a unique genetic trick to avoid being eaten by venomous snakes, according to University of Queensland research. Associate Professor Bryan Fry from UQ's Toxin Evolution Lab said the technique worked in a manner similar to the way two sides of a magnet repel each other. (2021-01-14)

The new yellow sea snake assumes an unusual ambush posture
Carrying its petite frame and all-yellow skin, the recently scrutinized sea snake populations from Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica, already seem different enough to be characterized as a new subspecies. However, their most extraordinary trait is only exposed at night when the serpents go hunting for small fish as they hang upside down just below the water surface assuming a peculiar sinusoidal ambush posture. This new subspecies is described in the open access journal ZooKeys. (2017-07-31)

Snake gait
Snake locomotion is a source of inspiration for technology: graceful, silent, adaptable and efficient, it can be implemented on devices designed for the most diverse applications, from space exploration to medicine. A study carried out by a SISSA research group, just published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society A - Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Science, adds to this line of research and proposes a detailed mathematical account of one of the characteristic types of movement adopted by this animal. (2016-02-05)

'Ghost snake' discovered in Madagascar
Researchers discovered a new snake species in Madagascar and named it 'ghost snake' for its pale grey coloration and elusiveness. The researchers from the LSU Museum of Natural Science, the American Museum of Natural History and the Université de Mahajunga in Madagascar named it Madagascarophis lolo, pronounced 'luu luu,' which means ghost in Malagasy. Their work was published in the scientific journal, Copeia, today. (2016-09-02)

Four-legged fossil suggests snakes evolved from burrowing ancestors
The discovery of a four-legged fossil of a snake hints that this suborder may have evolved from burrowing, rather than marine, ancestors. (2015-07-23)

Just one bite at a time: Researchers find snake with unusual feeding habit
Researchers at the University of Cincinnati, the Field Museum of Natural History and the National University of Singapore report in the July 11 issue of Nature about the unusual feeding habits of the tropical snake Gerarda prevostiana. The snake is able to rip soft-shelled crabs into small pieces, allowing it to quickly consume much larger prey than expected by its mouth size. (2002-07-10)

UGA student questions why snakes cross roadways
Student Kimberly Andrews -- when challenged by UGA ecology professor Whit Gibbons to come up with a research project that would add to the scientific literature on herpetology -- she asked the old riddle: (2002-10-29)

How do birds understand 'foreign' calls?
New research from Kyoto University show that the coal tit (Periparus ater) can eavesdrop and react to the predatory warning calls of the Japanese tit (Parus minor) and evokes a visual image of the predator in their mind (2020-05-19)

Snakes use friction and redistribution of their weight to slither on flat terrain
Snakes use both friction generated by their scales and redistribution of their weight to slither along flat surfaces, researchers at New York University and the Georgia Institute of Technology have found. Their findings, which appear in the latest issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, run counter to previous studies that have shown snakes move by pushing laterally against rocks and branches. (2009-06-08)

An ancient snake's cheekbone sheds light on evolution of modern snake skulls
New research from a collaboration between Argentinian and University of Alberta palaeontologists adds a new piece to the puzzle of snake evolution. (2019-11-20)

Are all rattlesnakes created equal? No, maybe not
New research by a team of biologists at Florida State University has revealed that creating antivenom is a bit tricky. That's because the type of venom a snake produces can change according to where it lives. (2015-01-14)

Lizard tail adaptations may reflect predators' color vision capabilities
Juveniles of numerous lizard species have a vividly blue-colored tail that likely serves to deflect predator attacks toward the detachable tail rather than the lizard's body. Now researchers have found that certain differences in blue and UV light reflectance in lizard tails are likely adaptations to predators with different color vision capabilities. (2016-06-22)

One step closer to cheaper antivenom
Researchers involved in an international collaboration across six institutions, including the University of Copenhagen and the National Aquarium of Denmark (Den Blå Planet), have successfully identified the exact composition of sea snake venom, which makes the future development of synthetic antivenoms more realistic. Currently, sea snake anitvenom costs nearly USD 2,000, yet these new findings could result in a future production of synthetic antivenoms for as little as USD 10-100. (2015-09-03)

Iranian coastal waters: New home to a rarely seen venomous sea snake
Günther's sea snake is a rarely seen venomous snake with distribution thought to stretch from the Malay Peninsula to Pakistan. Scientists, studying sea snake diversity in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, confirmed the occurrence of the species in Iranian coastal waters off the western Gulf of Oman, more than 400 kilometers away from the westernmost boundary of its previously known range. This new record is published in the open access journal ZooKeys. (2016-10-10)

The origin of snakes -- new evolutionary scenario presented
The early evolution of snakes happened from surface-terrestrial to burrowing in the lizard-snake transition suggests a research group at the University of Helsinki. (2018-01-25)

Tropical sea snake uses its head to 'breathe'
Humans use a snorkel and fish have gills. Now researchers have found a sea snake which uses a complex system of blood vessels in its head to draw in extra oxygen when it dives and swims underwater. During submersion, the blue-banded sea snake (Hydrophis cyanocinctus) is now thought to use an extensive vascular network across the top of its head to absorb oxygen from the surrounding water. (2019-09-03)

World's largest snake shows tropics were hotter in the past
The largest snake the world has ever known -- as long as a school bus and as heavy as a small car -- ruled tropical ecosystems only 6 million years after the demise of the fearsome Tyrannosaurus rex, according to a new discovery published in the journal Nature. (2009-02-04)

World's biggest snake gives climate clues
Skeletal remains from an enormous snake that would dwarf Hollywood's anacondas have been discovered near the equator, shedding new light on the climate and environment that housed the monstrous reptile 60 million years ago. (2009-02-04)

Scientists discover reasons behind snakes' 'shrinking heads'
An international team of scientists led by Dr Kate Sanders from the University of Adelaide, and including Dr Mike Lee from the South Australian Museum, has uncovered how some sea snakes have developed 'shrunken heads' -- or smaller physical features than their related species. (2013-03-20)

Unique feeding behavior of Asian kukri snakes gutting frogs and toads
After describing a novel behaviour of the Small-banded Kukri Snake last September, two new studies, also led by Henrik Bringsøe, now report the same gruesome feeding strategy - where the snakes pierce the abdomen of frogs or toads to swallow their organs, as the prey remains alive for up to a few hours - in another two species: the Taiwanese Kukri Snake and the Ocellated Kukri Snake. The findings are published in the peer-reviewed, open-access journal Herpetozoa. (2021-02-18)

Bee alert but not alarmed
An Australian-first national analysis of 13 years' data on bites and stings from venomous creatures reveals Australia's towns and cities are a hot-spot for encounters. (2017-01-17)

Monkeys inform group members about threats -- following principles of cooperation
Humans are often faced with the choice of investing in the greater good or being selfish and letting others do the work. Animals that live in groups often encounter threats, and informing others could potentially save lives. Researcher of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology show that wild sooty mangabeys, when facing dangerous vipers, do not just call out of fear or to warn their family, but will call when the information about the threat might otherwise not reach all group members. (2019-12-02)

Snake eyes: New insights into visual adaptations
New insights into the relationship between ultraviolet (UV) filters and hunting methods in snakes is one of the findings of the first major study of visual pigment genes and lenses in snakes -- published in the advanced online edition of Molecular Biology and Evolution. (2016-08-16)

Toxic cocktail: Okinawan pit viper genome reveals evolution of snake venom
For the first time, researchers have sequenced a habu genome, that of the Taiwan habu, and compared it to that of its sister species. (2017-10-04)

SMA unveils how small cosmic seeds grow into big stars
New images from the Smithsonian's Submillimeter Array telescope provide the most detailed view yet of stellar nurseries within the Snake nebula. These images offer new insights into how cosmic seeds can grow into massive stars. (2014-02-26)

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