Interesting Animal Facts 6

Animal Facts

The Year of the Snake

January 24, 2001 marked the beginning of the Year of the Snake, according to the Chinese calendar. In a belated celebration, here are some interesting facts about these "slithery" wonders!

-Snakes do not have visible ears--but they do hear!

-Forked tongues allow snakes to literally taste their surroundings, making them very good hunters.

-Snakes generally only eat fresh (read: alive) food. They can eat prey much larger than their own heads because of a very malleable jaw and a specialized skeletal system.

-Only about 300 of the world's 2,300 varieties of snakes are dangerous to people.

-Adult snakes range in size from less than half a foot to more than 30 feet in length.

-Snakes live on all continents but Antarctica--but not on all islands. (In fact, the European adder can be found NORTH of the Arctic Circle!) There are no snakes in New Zealand (except, perhaps, as pets).

-Snakes don't blink. Their eyes are protected by scales.

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