Thursday, April 2, 2015

Top 5 Snake Spots Around the World

With thousands of different snake species around the world, they exist on every continent except Antarctica.  Though some places host very few of the deadly reptiles, there are some places on the planet with such heavy concentrations of them that many people will not step foot on.  Here is a list of five places in the world where seeing a snake is almost second nature.    


#5. Snake Pagoda, Paleik Myanmar 


Though many cultures around the world believe that snakes are evil and should be completely avoided, you might be surprised that there are also some people who believe snakes should be worshipped.


buddhist statue


The snake pagoda surrounds a temple that was founded in 1979 after a pair of pythons were discovered coiled around a statue of Buddha within.  After multiple times of the monks returning the snakes to the jungle, they continued to return.


After seeing this strong attraction of the snakes to the Buddha, the monks began to see them as holy reincarnations of past monks, and eventually stopped removing them.


Nowadays, the snakes have come to much enjoy the area.  With a peaceful existence beside the monks and daily feeding, many snakes will visit and reside around the temple, as well as many people who wish to see them.


#4. Palo Verde National Park, Costa Rica


This park is home to the greatest concentration of water birds in South America, which means that it is a very alluring spot to the predacious boa constrictor snakes since these birds and their eggs are ideal prey for the snakes.


In this park, it is almost cavalier sight to see a large constrictor snake enjoying a meal.


In the dry season especially, the snakes are even more common.  Tours down the Rio Tempesque are always exciting because of flourishing population of these oversized snakes and birds.


#3. Pantanal, Brazil 


Many spots in South America are home to large populations of snakes.  Within the Amazon rainforest lurks a wide variety of snakes, including some of the largest and most venomous.  In Pantanal, Brazil, there is a spot so infested with anacondas that it has become quite a tourist attraction.


anaconda


The Estrada Parque is a dirt road that runs through the center of southern Pantanal, where most snakes can commonly be found basking in the sun and exploring.


Containing a hefty concentration of the largest snake in the world has made this a road a sight to see.  Just be sure to watch it from a distance!


#2. The Sonoran Desert  


Located in Arizona, this desert is home to the most species of rattlesnakes in the world.  Its climate and habitat are ideal to the snakes.  Though there is an extremely large population, they are not seen as much because most rattlesnakes will strive to avoid human contact.


If the snakes feel threatened by what they perceive to be predators, their rattle will sound as a warning.  These snakes tend to stay away from wide-open spaces and concentrate their efforts on smaller prey, such as mice and rats.


sonora desert


Interactions with them are more common during the warm seasons.  Common in the region, many snakes will be featured in events such as rattlesnake round-ups, where many of them are showcased.


#1. Snake Island


Located off the shore of Brazil, less than a hundred miles from São Paulo, lays one of the most terrifyingly snake-infested lands on the planet.  Ilha de Queimada Grande is an island is currently home to zero people and actually illegal to visit.  The reason for this is because it has the highest concentration of golden lancehead pit vipers on the planet.


The golden lancehead pit viper is one of the most malignant species of snake in the world.  Snakes in the lancehead genus are responsible for at least 90% of fatalities resulting from snake-bites in Brazil.


s


On the island, researchers have estimated that there is at least one, but possibly up to five of these snakes per square meter!  The only people who regularly visit the island legally are officials who go once a year to maintain the lighthouse on the island.  Some daring souls may also visit the island illegally in attempts to catch a few of the snakes, since they are valuable on the black market and to research.



Top 5 Snake Spots Around the World

Top 5 Myths About Snakes: Debunked

#5. Pythons sometimes measure their prey before consumption.


In a few tales that have spread around the internet, snake owners have reported strange behavior from their pets.  Often in these stories, the snake would refuse meals repeatedly and the owner would wake to find the snake in the bed with them, with its length stretched out beside them on various occasions.  After taking the snake to the vet to get an opinion on the matter, the vet says that the snake was measuring the owner and planning to eat them.snake creepy


Though tales like these have spread around and seem to make sense, the truth is that a python does not measure its prey.  Since snakes are ambush predators, they do not have time to do this; if they did, they would likely starve.  Pythons are known to grab, squeeze and eat.  Many of their meals are not well thought-out, and if are actually too large, will often be regurgitated.  A python does not measure its meal, or wait on it if it is ready to eat.


#4. A constrictor snake has consumed a full-grown adult human


While countless stories, and even photographs, have swam across the web making this claim, there has yet to be an entirely affirmative account of it.


snake face


In few cases, babies or small children have been swallowed by snakes, but never has a full-grown adult been consumed.  An adult human is very difficult for a snake to swallow because of its less-than-ideal size and shape.  The shoulders on the human body are very hard for a snake to swallow.


While there have been many stories stating this, there has yet to be a single account that has credibility.


#3. It is dangerous to eat a venomous snake


When figuring out whether to eat a reptile, it is important to note whether it is venomous or poisonous.  If a creature is venomous, it injects its toxins into its victims, and if a creature is poisonous that means that the toxins are excreted through its skin or other outlets.


To answer the question, there are actually no poisonous snakes on the planet.  All snakes are venomous, meaning that in order to harm a person, a snake must puncture a person’s skin with its fangs to inject them with its toxins.  If this process, which immediately combines the venom in a person’s bloodstream, does not occur, then the toxins within the snake are of no harm.


rattlesnake


Though in theory it is safe to eat even the most venomous snake in the world, it is still not exactly recommended.  Since if the venom is injected, it will be harmful, if it is able to enter the body through an opening in the skin, it mayl still be harmful.  If a person has a cut or abrasion in their mouth, and eats a venomous snake, they may still feel some of the effects from the venom.


Overall, it is considered safe to eat a venomous creature, but it is still risky.


#2. The function of a rattlesnake’s rattle


Some believe that it is used to lure in prey, while some believe that it is a mating call.  The most agreed upon reason that rattlesnakes have a rattle, supported by scientists and researchers, is that it is used when they feel threatened, or to warn potential predators that they are getting too close to it.


Another common myth about the rattle of these snakes is that it can serve as a determinant of the age of snake.  Though the rattle gains a new addition every time the snake sheds its skin, this cannot be reliable because the rattles are adding at various times and often break off. The rattle is made of keratin, which is the same as what human fingernails are made of, making it obvious how easily the rattles can break and tear.


snake rattle


A rattlesnake will not seek out large prey, such as humans, so if a rattlesnake senses one within a close perimeter, it will likely rattle its tail to warn.


Fun fact: To create the rattling noise, a rattlesnake will move its rattle at an incredible speed of sixty times per second!


#1. Snakes are aggressive towards humans 


Many people have ophidiophobia (the fear of snakes) because they simply do not understand them.  Many people have the misconception that snakes are always hungry, fierce and looking to attack.


snake striking


This is usually not the case though.  Most snakes actually just want to be left alone by humans.  Snakes are generally only aggressive if they are hungry, feel threatened, or sometimes if they are disoriented.


More times than not, if a snake comes into contact with a human, it will choose to slither away quickly, rather than strike.  Some snakes even have warning tactics, such as a rattlesnake’s rattle, to warn of their proximity.


While it is true that snakes have a history of attacking humans, there is usually a cause for it.  Stepping on a snake, demonstrating intent to harm it, or invading proximity are the most common reasons a snake will attack a person.  In other cases, constrictor snakes have attempted to eat humans if they are starved and see no other options.



Top 5 Myths About Snakes: Debunked

Friday, February 20, 2015

10 Things You Didn't Know About White Tigers

#10.  It is a common misconception that the white tiger is either a subspecies or an albino.  It is actually a mutant variation of tiger.  Only when both parents contribute the rare allele for the coloring, can a white tiger be born.


beautiful tigers


#9. Because both parents must contribute the rare allele, the natural birth of a white tiger is extremely rare.  Researchers have stated that only about 1 in every 10,000 tigers are born white in nature.


#8. Due to the high demand for white tigers in show business and the rarity of them, tigers that contain the gene are often inbred to increase the likelihood of reproduction.


#7. Genetic defects are far more common among white tigers, most due to inbreeding.  Some white tigers are born with club feet, crooked backbones, and domed-shaped heads.


 


kenny


#6. The gene in white tigers that produces their color is linked to a condition called strabismus, which complicates their eyesight.  Strabismus is a condition that causes visual problems and spatial and locative confusion in tigers.


#5.  Because of the condition strabismus, often white tigers will cross their eyes to compensate.  This condition is also common among siamese cats and albinos in certain species.


#4. While white tigers are very rarely spotted in the wild (it has been said that only 12 have been spotted in India ever) they are commonly found in captivity.  Siegfried and Roy’s Secret Garden is currently home to 40 white tigers.


white tigers


#3. While is commonly stated that breeding white tigers is necessary for the preservation of their species, this claim has been proven contrary.  The population of tigers, which has been endangered for decades, faces more harm than benefit from the specialized production of these mutant tigers.


#2. According to zoologists, the production of white tigers serves no purpose for conservation.  The primary benefit of creating white tigers is pocketed by the zoos and shows, which can attract higher numbers of admissions with these cats.


#1. It is said that all white tigers held in captivity descended from a male tiger named Mohan who was captured in Rewa, Central India, in 1951.


 


bright tigerfenced tiger



10 Things You Didn't Know About White Tigers

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Most Recent Chupacabra Sightings

Today we are looking into 3 recent chupacabra sightings, 2 happened last year ago in Texas and the 3rd one might be the most shocking of all time.


Chupacabra’s Caught on Tape


A chupacabra is a cryptid creature that was first reported in 1995 to have killed eight sheep in Puerto Rico.


Its often described as 4 and half to 5 feet tall, alien like eyes that glow red, with feathery spines that start at the base of the head and end at the tail.


Its victims are primarily farm animals like sheep or cows who have had the blood completely drained from their bodies through 3 puncture wounds in the neck.


El Chupacabra reports and sightings have been on the rise all around the world, but has any of them ever been confirmed to be a real chupacabra?


caught-chupacabra-cage-texas


Two of the most recent sightings have occurred in Texas with both creatures being caught on camera.


Scott Black of Houston, Texas took photos of a strange creature he described as big, long, with pointy ears, a long tail and no skin or fur.


Animal control expert Claude Griffin believes it is just an unfortunate result of someone’s attempt at crossbreeding exotic pets.


To me, it looks like a wild dog on the loose.


In Ratcliffe, Texas the Stock family claims to have caught what is a “baby” chupacabra.


As you can see in the video it is small, hairless and has large claws.


Brent Ortego, a wildlife diversity biologist with the Texas Parks and Wildlife has a different opinion.


He says it’s just a small canine that is suffering from mange.


In the Kolomna region of Russia, just 100km south of Moscow, a farmer woke up to find that 30 of his sheep had been attacked and killed by some unknown creature.


There was a significant amount of blood, as the sheep’s arteries had been cut “to suck out their blood.”


This was the typical style of killing associated with a Chupacabra which began to make its presence known in Russia since April of 2006..


According to the farmer, “30 creatures were virtually drained.” and they had experienced a similar attack earlier that year when they lost 8 sheep.


However, a local official, Svetlana Telnova went on record as saying that stray dogs were most likely culprits, and “Our veterinary doctors have dismissed the talk of drained blood.


All the sheep had a working heart muscle, so there is no Chupacabra,” she added.


The farmer of course disagrees, questioning how a dog would get in, as it would be virtually impossible for it to overcome the height of his fence.


To this day there has been no credible evidence to support the existence of a Chupacabra, through testing and evaluation, creatures that have been caught, or bodies that have been discovered have all turned out to be exactly what Brent Ortego stated, some sort of canine suffering from Mange.


Fact: The original and most important Chupacabra description cannot be “trusted,” according to Writer and professional skeptic Benjamin Bradford.


animal-caught-strange-alive-tape


After a 5 year investigation into the eyewitness account from Madelyne Tolentino of Puerto Rico that launched the legend, it became apparent that her description was influenced by the creature from the Sci-Fi Horror film Species.


Ms Tolentino believed that the creature and events in the movie were actually occurring in Puerto Rico, and this “seriously undermines the credibility of the chupacabra as a real animal,” according to Bradford.


Sounds like quite the conspiracy… So now I ask you, what do you believe is more likely to exist… The Chupacabra… or Bigfoot?


For more on the conspiracy of Bigfoot, I invite you to check out this video from our friends at Alltime Conspiracies.Chupacabra_strange-mythical-animal



Most Recent Chupacabra Sightings

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Real Jersey Shore Shark Attacks

Most vicious shark attacks in history. A huge killer great white shark attacked men, women, surfers, swimmers and was eventually caught. Or was it?


The Real Jersey Shore Shark Attacks of 1916


Jaws. The 1975 film that put Steven Spielberg on the map and taught a generation of us to watch out for fins every time we went for a swim…


Great movie, right? But did you know that Jaws was based on actual events?


Jaws

Jaws


In the infamous summer of 1916, a rogue man-eating great white shark wrought havoc along the Jersey shore, dragging vacationing swimmers under the water and gorging itself on their flesh.


Sea captains along the Atlantic coast had been reporting for weeks that they had seen large sharks gathering along the coast before the attacks, but their warnings were ignored.


For 12 horrifying days, from July 1st – July 12th, 1916, this marauding shark terrorized holiday makers up and down the coast.


When the panic hit and the beaches were closed, the “Sea Wolf”, as it came to be known, even traveled miles up freshwater Matawan Creek in its relentless hunt for human meat.


By the end of the shark’s rampage, 5 people had been attacked, only 1 of whom survived to tell the tale.


This series of vicious attacks became front page news, and sparked a shark panic all along the Atlantic coast.


Bounties were offered for dead sharks, and motorboats filled with armed glory hunters launched what has been described as “the largest scale animal hunt in history”.


Hundreds of sharks were killed in a matter of days, culminating in Barnum and Bailey lion tamer Michael Schleisser’s capture of a young, 7.5 foot, 325lb great white shark with human remains in its stomach.


Schleisser’s shark was labeled “The Jersey man eater” and was put on display in a Manhattan shop on Broadway.


While some skeptics have questioned whether Schleisser’s shark was really the shark responsible for these attacks, it is worth noting that the Jersey shore didn’t have another fatal attack for the next 24 years.


In fact, there hasn’t been another fatal shark attack in New Jersey since 1926, despite the presence of reality TV star and noted shark temptress Snooki in the Jersey Shore waters every summer for the past decade.



The Real Jersey Shore Shark Attacks

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Top 5 Creepiest Deep Sea Creatures

5. The Blob Fish


Found off the coast of Australia, this blob of pink gelatin dwells in depths between 2,000 and 3,900 feet.  The unique make up of this fish allows it to float just above the ocean floor without having to use energy.  Containing little muscle mass, the blob fish survives by swallowing edible particles that float around near it.


Blob Fish


4.  Finned Octopus


Found at depths between 3,000 and 4,000 feet, little is known about the Grimpoteuthis genus, which contains seventeen different species octopi.  These unique-looking creatures are easily identified by the fins on top of their heads, which they use more than their tentacles for transportation.


finned octopus


3. The Magnapinna Squid

Very little is known about this nightmarish creature, which is also referred to as the big-fin squid. Reaching lengths of up to twenty feet, it is also sometimes called the long-armed squid.  The Magnapinna squid is found in the ocean at depths beyond a mile, making it very rare to spot. Since its discovery, very few of this species have been caught and examined, leaving the exact biological information about these squid undetermined.


long-arm deep-sea squid


2. The Vampire Squid

This squid gets its name from its strange looking appearance which symbolizes a vampire, specifically its red eyes and webbed legs that form what looks like a cloak around its body. Sharing commonalities with both squids and octopi, this species is the only surviving member within its order, the Vampyromorphida.  The vampire squid resides in depths of the ocean between 2,000 and 3,000 feet, where very few other creatures can sustain life because of the extremely low oxygen saturation.


Vampire Squid


1. Venus flytrap sea anemone

With excessive tentacles to catch prey as it drifts by and to defend itself, this creature will rarely moves on its own. Found in depths between 3,300 and 6,000 feet, the venus flytrap sea anemone resides in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of West Africa in parts where currents are strong.


Actinoscyphia_aurelia



Top 5 Creepiest Deep Sea Creatures

Friday, January 16, 2015

World's 10 Weirdest Lizards

Meet the top 10 weirdest lizards in the world & subscribe to Wacky Universe for new top 10 lists every week.




Marine_iguana_red-weird-animals



World's 10 Weirdest Lizards