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 Colubrid Bites

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Laurence Goosey
Newbie
Newbie


Male
Number of posts : 7
Age : 29
Location : Bangor, UK
Points : 3415
Registration date : 2008-12-19

PostSubject: Colubrid Bites   Mon 29 Dec - 2:32

Hi,

My name is Laurence Goosey. I am currently working with Wolfgang Wüster on my third year dissertation project at Bangor University. I have designed and created a survey intended to expand our breadth of knowledge of snakes as a community.

Colubrids are very popular reptiles as pets (I keep several myself). Due to this, bites occur frequently within the herpetoculture community. Recent research indicates that most genera of colubrids are technically venomous. However, it has yet to be investigated to what effect colubrid bites generally have on humans. Occasionally random bite reports surface where nasty symptoms were recorded, but this is most likely NOT the case with the vast majority of bites. My survey on this topic hopes to expose the extent to which colubrids are of medical importance to us as herpetoculturists.

For this I need your help.

I would ask that anyone who has received a bite from any colubrid (with the exception of North American Rat Snakes and King Snakes – which have evolved to lose their venom) to click on the link to this survey and take a few moments to fill it out for the bites you have received.

I will post the principal conclusions online for the herpetoculture community to access once I have finished my Hons Thesis around April/May.

Your help is much appreciated.

Cheers,

Laurence
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Wolfgang Wüster
Systematicus
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Number of posts : 273
Age : 108
Location : UK
Points : 3987
Registration date : 2008-03-12

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Mon 29 Dec - 7:12

The survey is here

Cheers,

WW
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http://www.bangor.ac.uk/~bss166/
Rainer Fesser
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Male
Number of posts : 565
Age : 68
Location : Austria
Points : 4292
Registration date : 2008-03-13

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Mon 29 Dec - 17:19

Hello Laurence, hello Wolfgang,
I´m ready to contribute but I didn´t find the link

Have a good New Year,
Rainer
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Rainer Fesser
Systematicus
Systematicus


Male
Number of posts : 565
Age : 68
Location : Austria
Points : 4292
Registration date : 2008-03-13

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Mon 29 Dec - 17:21

Well- I found it now, you´ll get my data,
Rainer
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Laurence Goosey
Newbie
Newbie


Male
Number of posts : 7
Age : 29
Location : Bangor, UK
Points : 3415
Registration date : 2008-12-19

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Tue 30 Dec - 22:16

Rainer Fesser wrote:
Hello Laurence, hello Wolfgang,
I´m ready to contribute but I didn´t find the link

Have a good New Year,
Rainer

Hi,

It appears I wasn't having a good day when I was posting up the links! WW has thankfully posted it in both threads (cheers Wolfgang).

Cheers,

Laurence
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Laurence Goosey
Newbie
Newbie


Male
Number of posts : 7
Age : 29
Location : Bangor, UK
Points : 3415
Registration date : 2008-12-19

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Tue 30 Dec - 22:17

Rainer Fesser wrote:
Hello Laurence, hello Wolfgang,
I´m ready to contribute but I didn´t find the link

Have a good New Year,
Rainer

P.S.

Thanks, have a good new year yourself.
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Laurence Goosey
Newbie
Newbie


Male
Number of posts : 7
Age : 29
Location : Bangor, UK
Points : 3415
Registration date : 2008-12-19

PostSubject: Re: Colubrid Bites   Wed 17 Jun - 22:35

Medical Importance of Venomous Colubrids: Comparative Study of Colubrid and Viperid Bite Experiences

(Apologies for the delay in posting these conclusions)

Principal Conclusions:
• Most people underestimate the bite of colubrids, and many were caught unawares by medically important bites.
• The average colubrid bite is fairly insignificant in comparison to that of the average viperid bite (based on bites from Agkistrodon contortrix, Vipera ammodytes, V. aspis and V. berus).

The following genera and their medical importance are based on evidence shown within this study:

• Genera reported to have inflicted medically important bites are: Boiga, Chrysopelea, Dispholidus, Heterodon, Macropisthodon, Nerodia (potentially at least from some populations), Psammophis and Rhabdophis.
Bites were received from these genera that surpassed the average viperid bite severity.
Herpetologists/herpetoculturists would do well to use caution when dealing with species of the aforementioned genera. Suitable precautions could consist of as little as covering exposed skin, e.g. long sleeves and gardening gloves (t-shirts, shorts and sandals do not offer the best protection).

• Genera that also stand out as being of potential medical importance, but from which bites were NOT received that surpassed the average viperid bite severity, are: Crotaphopeltis, Hydrodynastes, Ialtris, Oxybelis, Philodryas and Thamnodynastes.
Bites were received from these genera that clearly caused significant symptoms but did not surpass the average viperid bite severity.

• Genera reported to have inflicted mild envenoming of mostly trivial medical importance, but stood out from the bulk of trivial colubrid genera, are: Ahaetulla, Coluber, Coronella, Leioheterodon, Leptophis, Liophis, Malpolon, Orthriophis, Rhadinophis and Thamnophis.
Bites were received from these genera that did not cause major symptoms, but stood out from the bulk of trivial colubrid genera, being of slight medical importance.

• Genera reported to inflict mild envenoming of no real medical importance are: Amphiesma, Coniophanes, Elaphe, Gonyosoma, Helicops, Hemorrhois, Hypsiglena, Lamprophis, Leptodeira, Masticophis, Orthriophis, Philothamnus, Platyceps, Psammophylax, Spilotes, Telescopus, Trimorphodon and Zamenis.
Bites that were received from these genera showed only trivial symptoms (very mild swelling, redness, itching, etc). It seems likely that many of these genera lack the venom quantity, venom delivery and/or venom potency to cause medically significant bites. Despite this, significant caution would be well advised, particularly around aggressive, large snakes of these genera. Covering exposed skin would likely be adequate protection.

• Genera from which bites, but no envenomations, were received are: Cerberus, Chironius, Coelognathus, Conophis, Diadophis, Dipsadoboa, Dolichophis, Drymarchon, Enhydris, Hierophis, Liochlorophis, Lycodon, Mastigodryas, Natrix, Pseudaspis, Pseustes, Spalerosophis, Stegonotus, Storeria, Thrasops, Tomodon, Waglerophis and Xenochrophis.
Bites from these genera did not show any reliable signs of envenomation.

These findings are from direct analysis of the responses received to the survey only.

Special thanks go to everyone who took part and in the survey and answered any questions I had.

Several months are still left on the survey subscription. In the interest of collecting as much data as possible I would urge anyone who has not filled in the survey, or has received further bites since filling it in, to enter their data into the survey. Further data will allow a full analysis of the results to be conducted again on a larger scale. Any extra results will not be included in my dissertation (which has already been completed and handed in). Extra results would still be beneficial as they would enable us to understand as much about the medical importance of venomous colubrids as possible. As with the last lot of results, principal conclusions of any new information will be posted online for all to have access to.

Link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=GngJyk_2fmsvMIqRjeTGWFaQ_3d_3d

Thank you very much for your input and support throughout the project. I hope you find the results of this study informative and useful.

Please direct any questions or communication to: leopardgeckosarecool@hotmail.com

Happy Herping,

Laurence
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