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Posted by Steve on June 17, 2001 at 01:16:33:
In Reply to: A question for Steve. posted by Zac on June 16, 2001 at 23:24:28:
Okay, you have to put this into proper perspective. I don't think that anyone has ever conclusively proven how dangerous the venom is, due to the difficulty in collecting venom from a rear-fanged snake. However, it seem to be pretty well accepted that it is somewhere in the same lines as the eastern diamondback.
Now that may sound frightening, but one thing you have to consider is that Hydrodynastes does not have the equipment to deliver the same kind of bite. So if you get bitten, and you remove the snake rather quicky (and don't yank it off or you'll do a lot of phyical damage) there shouldn't be to much of a reaction.
I have been nipped by my 7.5 ft female three times, and had nothing more that perhaps some excess bleeding (but you should be used to that). Once I took a full bite from a young female, got her off after just a few seconds and the bite burned for maybe five minutes and itched for an additional 10-15.
The worst I have ever heard of, and while this came from a reliable source, I don't know if it is documented. But a keeper in the UK was said to have been bitten by a male, in excess of seven feet in length, and for some reason the snake was able to hold on for 20-30 seconds. That man I heard spent four days in the hospital and equated the bite to that of a rattlesnake.
Something else to consider, if you got one that was captive born, you probably wouldn't have a problem. Mine is one of the sweetest snakes I have ever owned.
One last thing, I remembered what it was I was going to e-mail you. The name of that one snake you have the slide of. If I am not mistaken, it is Tripanurgos compressus. If you have access to Green's book, Snakes, the Evolution of Mystery in Nature, look on page 203.