This is a brief overview of the more commonly kept types of snakes. It has been divided up into three categories – constrictors, colubrids, and venomous.
- This particular category of snake is the largest, and the most powerful. They range in size from less than a foot (about one meter) all the way to about 30 feet long (about 10 meters). They kill their prey by coiling their bodies around the creature and asphyxiating it. Snakes in this category include pythons (pythonidae), and boas (boidae).
- Venomous snakes disable and kill their prey by using highly modified venom. It is saliva with the right combination’s of proteins, enzymes, peptide making it toxic. It is produced in the parotid gland though in the vast majority of animals (including humans) it does not produce toxic saliva. There are three main types of snake venom.
- Hemotoxic – Effects the heart and cardiovascular systems (rattle snakes are an example)
- Neurotoxic – Effects the nervous system and brain (cobras are an example)
- Cytotoxic – Effects the area around the bite resulting in cellular level decay (Puff adders are an example)
- These are the most common of snakes in the world. They make up over half of the snake population. Most are not dangerous to humans a few such as the boomslang are capable of killing a human with their venom.
Snakes from the colurbrid family make some of the best pets for beginners. These snakes are generally very docile, and amicable to handling. Corn snakes and king snakes are some of the most widely collected snakes in the world.
If you’ve decided on a particular type of snake maybe it’s now time to see if you have the three traits of a good snake owner.