The banded krait is a venomous snake that is native to India, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Bhutan. There are three different types of bands in the banded krait – green, white, and brown.
Each band has a different appearance and has different uses. How Do I Catch It? You are usually not able to do this, as this snake is difficult to spot because of the use of dark bands.
Because of this, the most common way to catch it is by luring it to open fields or the premises with the help of your local gardeners. Once the snake is inside the premises, either call local people for assistance, or you can try to behead it.
What Do I Do If I Get Bitten? The best way to treat a bite from a banded krait is to immediately get the bite checked and find the snake.
What is a krait?
It is called a “krait” because it has a spiral form of serrated teeth on the outside of its upper jaw. It is also known as “banded krait” because of its banded pattern of bright red or yellow stripes on a cream-coloured background.
Banded krait – This species of venomous snake is found in northern India, Bangladesh, southern China, Myanmar, and the Malayan Peninsula. Banded krait bite is fast and fatal.
How does it kill? Banded kraits attack their prey by striking repeatedly and without warning. Once bitten, the krait secretes a saliva that is toxic to many types of animals and insects.
Some animals that have been found to have died from banded krait bites include dogs, cats, hares, rats, mice, squirrels, cattle, and mongoose.
The Venom of the Banded Krait
The venom of the banded krait can be deadly, causing hemolytic blood poisoning, haemolytic rhabdomyolysis (destruction of muscle tissue), and tissue necrosis.
This venom causes massive vascular blockage and subsequent multi-organ failure leading to death within 6 hours. Blood is removed from the body, causing tissue death and causing circulation of the body to suffer.
The systemic symptoms appear within an hour, which include swelling of the face, extremities, lips, tongue, chest, abdomen, and pelvis, a high pulse rate, nausea, headache, unconsciousness, and paralysis of the respiratory muscles.
This deadly snake does not co-occur with major clinical diseases like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Conservation of the banded krait
Banded kraits were used for traditional Chinese medicine and particularly given their high toxicity. It’s said that the Chinese emperor Liu Xiang, was poisoned using a banded krait in the 6th century BC.
Although I think this is a folk tale as the “king of snakes” is clearly none other than the cobra. More info: OHS, amazon.in 3. General Typhoon Cobra (Cobra Toppa) The General Typhoons are found in the warmer parts of India, and the range of the species extends into other parts of Southeast Asia as well.
These include Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam. The General Typhoons are generally not very dangerous to humans, and the highest recorded bite rate is 2.6%.
The banded krait’s diet and hunting habits
The banded krait hunts for other snakes, though its favorite prey is small frogs. It is venomous and contains four different species of venom known as toxic spitule.
This spitule contains potent neurotoxins that are responsible for the snake’s dangerous temperament. There are two main ways in which the banded krait uses its venom. It either stings the target repeatedly, or mixes the toxins in its saliva.
Banded krait uses its venom to kill its prey (Image source: indianspot) The banded krait’s venom has two distinct forms, each of which are used in different ways. Snake venom causes an illness called angioedema.
In this form, a victim experiences itching and swelling of the entire body. This has two distinct phases, an ‘early’ phase, and an ‘end’ phase.
The banded krait’s life cycle
The banded krait snake’s life cycle, as far as we know, is very simple, involving three stages: Oocytes can be found from April to May (possibly before). Can develop into a young snake from around July to August.
In August, the ovum can be fertilized. The new snake grows up from August to September. In October, the young snakes are born from the belly. The young snakes’ lifespan is a maximum of one year, with a mean of 6.7 months.
They reach adulthood by the age of one year. Banded Krait Venom The banded krait is the only elapid snake with poison glands on the head. If they bite, venom is injected to the target’s bloodstream.
The dose of venom injected depends on the size and strength of the snake, as well as the source of the snakebite.
What is a krait bite like?
A krait bite feels like eating ketchup with your teeth. It feels like you are chewing a crushed metal can.
Why are kraits so dangerous? Most of the species are from the subfamily Pseudonaja, which includes the most venomous snakes in the world, so krait bites are potentially deadly to humans.
The venom from a banded krait contains a large amount of serrate peptides, both in the venom gland and in the venom gland extract, which contribute to the lethality of the bite.
The serrate peptides of a banded krait’s venom are among the most powerful found in any reptile, according to a study published in the journal Structure in 2012. Banded kraits can bite even if you are standing still.
The facts about the banded krait
Banded krait poison is known to be highly neurotoxic, the venom of the banded krait can cause brain injury and death. It is responsible for an unusual number of deaths in Sri Lanka.
It also is known to be fatal in the Indian Subcontinent, Myanmar, and Bangladesh, and in southern China. Banded krait poison affects the heart and brain, and the victim does not die immediately.
The symptoms may take three to ten days to develop. The victims experience severe muscle paralysis and then start to bleed internally.
The venom’s effect on the heart, especially in those it enters through the blood vessels, results in the complete shutdown of the pumping mechanism.
There is no cure for the bite of the banded krait. Resuscitation, such as CPR, is possible but the prognosis is poor.
How to protect yourself from a banded krait
The banded krait is a deadly snake, and you should treat it as seriously as you would a cobra. There are a few things you can do to protect yourself from the snake.
1. Do not go barefoot. It is very difficult to detect the banded krait through the heel of your barefoot, particularly if it is small. If you go barefoot and find a banded krait, it will likely eat you.
2. Keep your bag and wallet close to you. They are tempting snake prey for the banded krait, so they can’t hurt you without getting eaten. Be sure to wear a belt or pants with a strong waistband so that you can hold them in front of you in a defensive position.
3. Avoid bamboo unless you have a container to put them in.
What to do if you’re bitten by a banded krait
If you are bitten by this snake, the most important thing to remember is that the bite is not considered life-threatening, especially when the creature is not exerting itself in defence.
Very rarely, a person bitten by this snake can develop a chronic venous thromboembolism, which can cause death if not properly treated.
What to do if you think you’ve been bitten by this snake: Divert the victim’s attention and keep the person conscious. Try to immobilise the victim’s neck by wrapping a tourniquet round it.
Give the victim a large dose of heparin. If there are no obvious signs of the snake bite, or the person can’t tell you what sort of snake it was, call a local snake expert immediately.
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