This Snake's Last Meal Tried To Eat Its Way Out

A Serbian biologist recently stumbled upon a rather disturbing sight, one that took her a few moments to process: A young viper snake had swallowed a centipede practically its own size — but it proved to be a meal that wasn't quite ready to give up. » 4/17/14 7:20am 4/17/14 7:20am

Are Humans Hardwired to Detect Snakes?

The “snake detection theory” holds that snakes played a significant role in the evolution of humans and other primates. They molded our brains, shaped our visual systems, and helped us survive. Now there is new evidence to back up this unusual theory, which explains both our agile minds and our uncanny ability to sense … » 10/29/13 11:00am 10/29/13 11:00am

Mighty mouse attacks venomous snake to free its fellow mouse

Just because you're prey, that doesn't mean that you have to take being eaten lying down. At Hangzhou Zoo in Zhejiang province, eastern China, zookeepers witnessed an unusual sight after two live mice were placed in a snake's enclosure for supper. As the snake started to eat one of the mice, the other began biting the… » 3/09/13 5:00pm 3/09/13 5:00pm

U.S. To Drop Toxic Mice On Guam's Invasive Snakes

Last September we told you about how snakes are turning Guam into a spider-infested horror show. The island's brown tree snake population has reached epic proportions and is now threatening Guam's native bird species, along with neighboring islands. But where the U.S. government dropped shells on the island back in… » 2/22/13 11:20am 2/22/13 11:20am

Say hello to Imantodes chocoensis, a new snake with anime eyes and a…

Researchers scouring the Chocoan forest in northwestern Ecuador have discovered an unknown species of blunt-headed vine snake, what they're formally calling Imantodes chocoensis. And it's pretty neat — it's got an absolutely huge set of eyes, a head the size of a penny, and a long, stringy body that's proportioned… » 11/29/12 10:36am 11/29/12 10:36am

Scientists identify virus that makes snakes tie themselves into knots…

This is about as nightmarish as it must get for snakes: Scientists have finally identified an ebola-related disease that causes snakes to tie themselves into knots, stare off into space, and waste away. The condition, which was first discovered in the 1980s, is called inclusion body disease (IBD), and is known to… » 8/24/12 11:07am 8/24/12 11:07am

Watch intrepid scientists wrestle the biggest Burmese python ever…

The US Geological Survey (USGS) is full of extremely adventurous scientists. They walk around on volcanoes, hunt down giant mud slides, and — who knew? — wrestle with pythons in the Florida Everglades. USGS communications coordinator Ben Young Landis just emailed io9 to tell us all about this enormous snake: » 8/14/12 4:24pm 8/14/12 4:24pm

This photo of a spider eating a 1.5-foot-long snake will burn into…

As if you needed further proof that Australia is a phantasmagoric hellscape of arachnid horror, here's a charming photograph of a golden orb spider consuming a half-meter brown tree snake. This battle — which occurred over the course of an hour yesterday — was shot by photographer Ant Hadleigh in a backyard in… » 4/19/12 4:35pm 4/19/12 4:35pm

Can you actually get high on snake venom?

Snake venom is not something one intentionally consumes — if anything, we tend to flee from snakes at any cost. But say you are at a rave and someone tosses you a pill touted to contain dried snake venom. From a biochemistry perspective, is it possible to use snake venom as a recreational drug? » 4/04/12 7:00am 4/04/12 7:00am

Can snakes really be charmed by music?

No. The charm has nothing to do with the music and everything to do with the charmer waving a pungi, a reed instrument carved out of a gourd, in the snake's face. Snakes don't have external ears and can perceive little more than low-frequency rumbles. But when they see something threatening, they rise up in a defensive … » 12/24/11 10:30am 12/24/11 10:30am

Meet the Agta, a tribe where a quarter of men have been attacked by…

When Thomas Headland first met the world's longest snake, he was on the way to the toilet. He was living in the Philippine rainforest with a group of hunter-gatherers called the Agta. On the walk to the outhouse behind his hut, he stumbled across a reticulated python curled up on the trail. "The hairs on the back of my… » 12/17/11 1:30pm 12/17/11 1:30pm