Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Black Mamba


The Black Mamba or Dendroaspis polylepis is the largest poisonous snake in Africa sometimes growing upto 14 feet in length. It gets its name from the blackish discoloration inside the mouth while the skin colour can range from yellowish-green to grey. It is the fastest snake in the world, capable of moving at speeds ranging from 16-20km/h. However it uses its speed to escape rather than attack as it is, in general, shy and secretive, always seeking to escape when a confrontation occurs. It's venom is a neurotoxin, with a mortality of 100% within 20-60 minutes unless treated urgently with anti-snake venom. The black mamba is one of the most dangerous and feared snakes in Africa due to its potent venom, large size, and the ferocity of its attacks. However, humans bitten by black mambas are rare, as the snake would rather avoid confrontation with humans, and their occurrences are uncommon. Mongooses are the main predators of the Black Mamba. They are resistant to the venom due to a mutation in their nicotininc acetylcholine receptor preventing the neurotoxin from binding to the receptor. All hail the Black Mamba..... And of course, the mongoose........


P.S. The extensive research required for this post was conducted on the well-beloved Wikipedia.

9 comments:

  1. oooooh!!! scary!!

    but strange.....I was laughing my way through this post!

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  2. Oh... Post script:

    When the Black Mamba does visit you, or you visit his home, Mac PC and Firefox browser, do put up a picture here. Curiosity is beginning to kill me as well!

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  3. Hi Deepa, will keep you informed! And by the way, a disclaimer - this post was completely Amy's idea!!

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  4. Yeehaw! I have a whole post dedicated to my namesake. I must have impressed someone, surely!

    I am much like my sobriquet - shy and avoiding confrontation but at the same time blindingly fast, poisonous and deadly dangerous. Cross me at your peril.....

    And don't get me started on that wretched mongoose......!!

    @Deepa - I'm pretty sure there are pics of AJM and me together out there. In fact, AJM might even own a couple. I know I do.

    Amy, dear Amy. A sense of humour, no less. I'm beginning to like you more and more...... Keep it coming. Game on!

    - The Black Mamba

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  5. TBM - after all this build-up I am reaching the point where I think it will be an anti-climax to find out who you are! Unless of course you were serious about a trip to Shillong, in which case it has to be soon! The question I am asking myself is - how senior to me were you.......

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  6. Now, now. You wouldn't want me to let the cat out of the bag so easily, would you? No leading questions please.

    Yes, I'm serious about visiting you in Shillong. Unfortunately, circumstances prevent me from doing so right now. How much longer do you intend being there?

    Remember what I said about red herrings........ And do you know much about VPN's?

    - The Black Mamba

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  7. We may not be too long TBM - so make your plans! And thanks to Wikipedia, I now know about VPNs. But the Mac is a constant methinks!

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  8. Not always, look closer and you will find a couple of Internet Explorer posts there too to go with the Firefox and Chrome. Meaning there has to be a PC in the mix somewhere. Or is it just a PC masquerading as a Mac? Or maybe a Mac in the guise of a PC? Isn't Safari the default browser for Macs?

    I'm confused now......

    Maybe it's all just part of my dastardly plan for world domination.

    - The Black Mamba

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  9. On that confusing note, I better sign off!

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