Snake Portaits

Snakes don't bother me in the Indiana-Jones way they bother some people. I find them intriguing. Not that I'd want one in my house or dropping on me from a tree but I'd welcome one in my garden. A small, non-poisonous, non-constricting type of snake. I would accept without hesitation a snake that was willing to discuss books with me.

One of the pages I visited described snakes as sensually attractive. Do you think so? I'd describe them as streamlined and that's pleasing to the senses but in what other way are they sensual? They smell terrible. They're not cuddly. Nice to look at, yes, and I didn't realize they came in such dazzling shades of blue and I love blue things!

The following photographs were taken by Guido Mocafico. His web site is here. He takes pictures of all kinds of things besides snakes but his snakes are lovely. He arranges them in rectangular boxes.

Another photographer who has done snake portraits is Mark Laita. He has other very interesting work that you will recognize immediately. You can check out his website here. Mark Laita arranges his snakes in a freestyle configuration.

Malayan Coral

Mexican Black King

Philippine Pit Viper


Eastern Brown

Green Vine

King Cobra

Manshen Viper


Rhinoceros Viper

Timber Rattlesnake

Vogel's Pit Viper

So if a photographer is fiddling around with snakes, in the case of Mark Laita the most poisonous snakes in the world, one begins to wonder whether they get bitten, doesn't one? The answer to that is yes and the cool thing is because they're photographers they have a camera ready to record the event! Even if they didn't know it at the time.

Still life fruits don't bite. Just saying. 

He says he didn't realize he had been bitten by the Black Mamba until he processed the pictures and saw it latched onto his leg. So why wasn't he dead instead of viewing a shocking photo of what should have been certain death?

Poison uses a lot of resources to manufacture. Since it takes so much out of the snake to make it, adult snakes use it sparingly and Mark Laita received a venomless bite or what is known as a dry bite. Most poisonous snake bites are received from juvenile snakes who have not yet learned to budget their venom. (Poisonous spiders are also capable of dry bites)

The frequency of dry bites depends on the type of snake with some delivering non-venomous bites 80% of the time and others only 5% and as you can imagine the later types of snake live in Australia. Black Mamba's are African, however. Envenomed Mamba bites are mostly fatal unless you can get help fast. It's got the fastest acting venom in all of snakedom and it delivers a few hundred times the amount of venom actually needed to kill you. A Mamba has been documented as killing a 7,500 pound elephant. What it planned to do with that elephant once it was down is unknown but I bet that day it reconsidered the wisdom in only being able to swallow its prey whole.


Tonya said...

I had never heard of a "dry bite." That's fascinating.

I like snakes. I used to bartend in a place that had one and I frequently wore him while I worked. He loved to play in my hair. I'd love to own a snake, but I couldn't feed them. I have no problem with animals eating other animals, but it seems to me that it's cruel to buy mice and put them in a cage with a snake where they have no hope of escape. Until they perfect Snake Flakes (I'm trademarking that), I won't own one. The day they do, I probably still won't own one because my husband is afraid of them.

Sensual? Not so much. Phallic? Definitely.

Tonya said...

The Craziest Veterinarian had snakes and he would freeze his mice and then feed them to the snakes later. I considered doing that, but it was too much work. Snake Flakes.

Angie said...

I think snakes are interesting in pictures and think it's fascinating they come in such vivid colors, but I don't care to own one and would rather not see one in person.

Frimmy said...

Phallic is definitely the better word. Did the snake you know smell bad?

Anonymous said...

I think these photos are gorgeous. We only have garter snakes around here. I catch them and throw them over the fence otherwise my one dog torments them and usually ends up killing them.


Anonymous said...

FYI - I can catch and release a snake, I cannot kill a spider in the house without a fistful of paper towels wadded up and a whole lot of screaming.


Frimmy said...

I'm the same. It's the crunching of the exoskeleton and the extruding of the guts that does that to me. A snake would be so much better. Bigger and easier to track. I have left spiders in a corner or in a plant IF they stay there and don't migrate. I figure they can deal with the spider mites as better than I can. But as soon as they start travelling, the pillow made of tissue is armed to deal with the migrant.

Frimmy said...

Impressive about the snake catching too!!

Tonya said...

I've honestly never encountered a smelly snake. I never heard of them smelling until you mentioned it. All the ones I've known have had no odor at all.

I don't mind catching a garter snake. I don't mind catching any as long as I know they won't bite. I'm not knowledgeable about what ones bite and what ones don't. If I know they won't, then I have no problem. I also catch and kill all the bugs around here. The husband has a snake and bug phobia. I don't really mind anything except worms. All of my terror of insects is condensed into worms.

Angie said...

Anything that moves faster than my brain can process their innocence, is going to die by way of heavy household item.


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