Greetings to you all! This is to keep you updated about my tour to one of the zoological gardens situated in the largest city in West Africa. Having enjoyed an interactive session with some learned facts about the Ape some days ago, my wife decided we should explore the world of snake. Personally, I did not have an interest in snakes, because of snake phobia in me, but as a man, I always try to hide such a fear from her, so I had no choice than to succumb.
The importance of snake in our ecosystem can never be overlooked, although many people do not really know this, snakes have always been act as population controllers in a farmland, they did this by feeding on rodents, mice among many other small animals that used to destroy and eat farmland's products.
The first fascinating snake we considered learning about is Africa Rock Python.
Africa Rock Python belongs to animalia kingdom, chordata Phylum, subphylum of vertebrata, class of reptilia, order of squamata, suborder of serpentes, family of pythonidae and sebae species. It is called Ojola in Yoruba language.
Africa Rock Python is mostly found in sub-Saharan Africa, Central, Western Africa, and Southern Africa such as Botswana, Namibia, Angola, Mozambique, e.t.c.
Africa Rock Python is a non venomous snake found in sub -saharan Africa. It is the third largest snake in the world and the only large snake on the Africa continent: reaching a length of over 20ft and weights over 250 lbs. This species is noted for its bad temperament and readiness to bite if harassed.
They are carnivorous (they feed only on meat).All pythons kill by constricting their prey, like all snakes, they do not chew but swallow their prey whole. They are opportunistic feeders: capable of taking any animal they can overpower by constriction, even humans, making them very dangerous. This animal lives and hunt alone.
Africa Rock Python have the potential to lay up to one hundred (100) eggs. They undergo an incubation period between 2-3 months and the mother aggressively defends her eggs. Hatchlings are between 45-60cm in length; with brighter colors than their parents.
Vulnerable, that is, it is not endangered but needs special permit to capture or export it.
They live up to 30 years.
The second fascinating snake we considered learning about is Black Cobra Snake.
Black Cobra snake belongs to animalia kingdom, chordata Phylum, class of reptilia, order of squamata, family of elapidae and naja species. It is called SEBE in Yoruba language.
The black cobra is mostly found in forest and in agricultural fields in India, Pakistan, Sri Lankan, Bangladesh, as well as parts of Nepal and Bhutan.
Black Cobra snake is widely Known for their poisonous and deadly substance called venom and threateningly inauspicious appearance, black cobras are well respected by those who live, work and conduct research with this impressive snake. Black Cobras belongs to elapidae (the class venomous family of snake) which also includes mambas and coral snakes. Black Cobra snake is famous for its illustrious defensive display, the black cobra conspicuously warns others of its deadly nature when threatened.
The black cobra feeds on rodents, lizards and frogs in their areas, making them both aid and a threat to people who live with them. By feeding on rodents, they help keep agricultural crops healthy and also serves as population control, yet they are also drawn to human settlements and are more likely to have contact with people, thereby increasing the risk of byte.
Indian cobras are oviparous in the sense that they lay their eggs between April and July in a year. Mostly, female snake lays between ten (10) to thirty (30) eggs in rat holes or termites mounds and the eggs used to get hatched after 48 to 69 days. The hatchlings measure between 20 and 30 centimeters (7.9 and 12 in) in length. The hatchlings are independent from birth and have fully functional venom glands.
It can live an average of 20 to 30 years.
The third fascinating snake we considered learning about is Royal Python snake.
Royal Python belongs to animalia kingdom, chordata Phylum, class of reptilia, Order of squamata, family of pythonidae and P.regius specie. It is called ERE in yoruba language.
Royal Python are found in Africa from senegal, Mali, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Benin, and Nigeria through Cameroon, Chad and the Central Africa Republic to Sudan and Uganda.
Royal Python unlike Black Cobra, is a non venomous Python species found in Africa. The one shown in the glass above is the smallest of the African Python you can come across and it is popular in the pet trade, largely due to its typically docile temperament. They are known for their defense strategy that involves coiling into a tight ball when threatened, with its head and neck tucked away in the middle. In this state, it can literally be rolled around.
In the wild, their diet consists mostly of small mammals, such as African soft-furred rats, shrew and striped mice. In captivity, they feed on domestic rats, mice and chicks.
Females are oviparous. They laid 4-6 leathery eggs. The eggs are incubated by the females under the ground and hatch after 55-60 days. Sexual maturity is reached at 11-18 months for males and 20-36 months for females.
They are not considered threatened currently.
Up to 20 years in the wild and up to 48 years in captivity.
- King cobras have been revealed as the longest venomous snakes in the world.
- Reticulated pythons have been revealed to be the longest snakes in the world.
- Sea snakes have no gills and have to surface occasionally. They however can remain submerged for a long time as they have the ability to utilize the oxygen dissolved in water.
- Some snakes are capable of flying. They are used to glide from one tree branch to another. They flatten the body into a disc which enables gliding.
- Green anacondas have been affirmed to be the heavyweights snake in the world.
- Research has revealed that Eastern diamondback rattlesnakes are the heaviest venomous snakes across the globe.
Thanks for being with us in this journey to the zoological world and I do hope you are also catching the fun virtually. Have a nice and no boring week ahead
2. Python Facts
3. What is the biggest snake in the world?
4. The Year of the Snake
5. African Rock Python – One of the largest snake species on the planet
6. King cobra
7. Facts About Cobras