Reptiles of Arizona. From November to March, when the weather is cool, sidewinders are diurnal. However, they … As a result, they turn dark brown.
It’s a survival mechanism that helps these tiny snakes to survive.
A sterile dry bandage may be used to cover the wound, Avoid unnecessary movement (running or walking) and try to keep the victim as comfortable and warm as possible; stay with the victim until help arrives to provide reassurance, Make a note of the exact time of the incident and notify the emergency medical personnel accordingly, Try to identify or locate the reptile (only if safely possible) and keep the medical personnel informed; if possible, try to take a picture of the snake using one’s mobile phone, If the snake is dead, then try to carefully take the snake in a safe container to the healthcare center for identification, Use pressure bandage to immobilize the affected site or limb, such that blood circulation is not cut-off; the pressure immobilization technique should be attempted by trained personnel only, Remove constrictive clothing and any jewelry, such as bangles, bracelets, wrist watches, and rings, from the limb that is involved, especially before applying pressure immobilization, Further a splint (or stick) should be used to prevent the limb joints from bending, Avoid anything that can cause an obstruction in the airways, DO NOT give anything orally to the individual, Unless directed by the physician, DO NOT give any medication, Safely transport the affected individual to the nearest and appropriate healthcare facility (having expertise in snakebite treatment, if available), Administer antivenom if available, and ONLY if a qualified healthcare provider is present, Shaking the affected arm or leg of the bitten individual, Forcing the individual to walk long distances (the victim should be carried, as far as possible), Tying constricting bandages above the fang mark, Applying ice or pouring other liquids (alcohol) on the bite site, Applying heat packs or trying to burn the bite site (applying hot embers), Cutting the wound in an attempt to wash away the venom, Sucking the bite wound, in an attempt to suck and spit out the venom; or, using any mechanical device to apply suction to the wound, Applying topical creams/ointments or any chemicals such as potassium permanganate, Giving tea, coffee, or any alcoholic beverages to the victim (water may be given to keep the individual hydrated, if required), Administering ANY form of traditional treatments, use of herbal/native medicines, or other unapproved treatment measures, Administration of antivenom serum (AVS) should be allowed only when there are identifiable signs and symptoms of local and systemic envenomation along with supporting laboratory test evidence, At many health centers, the antidote to snake bite envenomation is scarcely available and usually very expensive; thus, it is important to not waste such a life-saving resource, Also, in many individuals, there is a high risk for severe allergic reaction, such as anaphylaxis, to the antivenom that may even be fatal, Consultation with a medical toxicologist is recommended for all cases requiring anti-snake venom administration, The individual himself/herself or someone nearby may begin administering basic First Aid, Call your local emergency helpline number or 911 (within the US) immediately, Site of bite and the amount of toxin injected, Age and overall health status of the individual, Timely manner in which antivenom is administered, Severity of allergic reactions, if any develop, Effectiveness of the treatment following admission, Avoid unnecessary contact with any snake; if you spot a snake, try to keep a safe distance between yourself and the snake, Completely refrain from touching, provoking, or picking up any snake (even if it is dead), Educate the local community about venomous snakes in the region, Be on the lookout for snakes while trekking, hiking, camping, or while traveling through snake-infested areas (forests, grasslands, thick bushes, even dry woodlands), While walking through such areas, always stay on clear pathways and roads, Wear protective clothing such as boots, full length pants, and full-sleeved shirts, while exploring the woods and forestlands, Avoiding being outdoors at night in forested areas, Do not ignore the warnings on signboards or of forest/wildlife officials, Do not probe into dark recesses and crevices with your bare hands; check out for snakes concealed on tree branches or bushes before moving or holding them, Wildlife researchers and amateur explorers are requested to carry suitable first aid kits, Keep homes and surrounding areas clean and clear of rubbish or leafy piles, termite mounds, and even building materials, Teach and educate children about the dangers and importance of snakes, Remove the victim immediately from the spot (prevent further bites), Call your local emergency helpline number (or 911) for help, Immobilize the affected site (arm or leg), Transport the victim without delay to an appropriate health center of care, Do not hesitate to call your emergency help services, Do not waste precious time attempting to catch or kill the snake for identification purposes, Do not medicate the individual, unless advised by a healthcare professional, Do not move the affected region of the body too much, Do not run or exercise which might increase the circulation of toxin in the body, Do not elevate the affected area above the heart level, since this can also increase circulation of the toxin.
In northwestern Mexico, it is found in western Sonora and eastern Baja California. scutulatus. Owners of venomous snakes are referred to among reptile enthusiasts as ‘hot heads’ (venomous snakes are nicknamed ‘hots’). Roze, J.A. However, sidewinders are an exception to this rule. Adults lose this behavior as they make the transition from lizard prey to their primary diet of desert rodents. It’s common among lizards such as chameleons, but rare in snakes.
New York: Alfred A. Knopf. We hope you and your family enjoy the NEW Britannica Kids. Young sidewinders use their tail to attract small lizards.
Some of the venomous ones include the following. Herpetologists' League. Ernst, C.H., and Barbour, R.W. The desert sidewinder (Crotalus cerastes) is a venomous pit viper native to the deserts of southwestern United States and northern Mexico. They’re the preferred prey of many animals such as coyotes, birds of prey, and reptiles such as leopard lizards. A short brown or black tail tapers to a small rattle. Western North American Naturalist, 77(3), 309-317.  The females are larger than the males, which is unusual for this group of snakes. Within 2.5 hours, his entire arm was swollen and the pain was severe, "as if the arm were soaked in a bucket of boiling oil.". This snake has an excitable temperament and sometimes strikes repeatedly. Evolution of Life Histories in Rattlesnakes, University of California, Berkeley. Depending on where you live, you’ll likely need to apply for a permit. Save my name and email in this browser for the next time I comment. Most snakes move roughly in a straight line, with their entire body touching the ground. Reiserer, R. S., G. W. Schuett, and R. L. Early (2008) Dynamic aggregations of newborn sibling rattlesnakes exhibit stable thermoregulatory properties. Because juvenile sidewinders are so small, they struggle to catch and eat most kinds of prey. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. They are ovoviviparous, meaning they give birth to live young.
In the wild, females often die of exhaustion after giving birth, but the lives of sidewinders are also cut short by predation, diseases, and vehicle encounters.
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