Can a snake strike or bite underwater?
Yes! Just as a
person can swim and open the mouth to make noise
underwater, a snake can go down, close its rear jaw
muscles, open its mouth quite large.....and bite
effectively! All this without taking on water or
drowning. Some snakes feed by capturing their food
underwater with a swift strike and a gaping, tooth-filled
mouth! There have been incidents with water moccasins
where a bite occurred at 25 feet or more under the
surface during a scuba outing. If disturbed, they will
bite, whether on the surface or while traveling
underneath. Many times, the snake will enter the water at
the sound or indication of an intruder in their area.
There they lay on the bottom as if to avoid contact or
being spotted. If accidentally stepped on or bumped, they
will assume the worst and often strike out in a normal
reaction to attack. By the way, rattlesnakes swim quite
well too, and have the capability to bite underwater as
|Authored by CONCISE COMMUNICATIONS. This page last updated on 05/28/97.
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