Scientific identify: Dasypeltis scabra 
Scientific classification:
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Colubridae


What does it appear to be?
The egg-consuming snake is a skinny-bodied species that may attain a measurement of round 75 cm. They vary in coloration from grey to brown. Along there again they've darkish chevrons and or squares/blotches.

Where does it stay?
Thissnake is a local to Southern Africa. It is present in quite a lot of habitats, however doesn't frequent deserts or forest areas the place the cover is totally closed. It is commonly encountered in areas of thorny scrub with rocky outcrops off ering quite a few crevices for shelter.

Characteristics

The phrase snake conjures up photos of animals that subdue energetic prey with crushing coils or lethal venom, however nature by no means misses a chance and there may be even a snake that feeds completely on eggs. The widespread egg-consuming snake, with its slight, fl exible physique can simply negotiate the skinny limbs and smaller branches of bushes within the hunt for hen’s eggs. Its fl ickering tongue attracts air into its mouth and into contact with the Jacobson’s organ. This small organ features like a nostril, selecting up the delicate trace of egg odors which may be carried within the air. As quickly because it picks up the scent it would make straight for the supply. The egg-eater just isn't a big snake, so if it possibilities upon a nest containing some huge eggs it would have to proceed its search. As quickly because it finds a clutch of suitably sized eggs the snake will sniff each rigorously. Even from this preliminary investigation, the small serpent can assess whether or not the egg is wholesome or rotten and how developed it's. Obviously, a rotten egg is out of the query and an egg with a welldeveloped chick inside could be too tough to eat. What it actually needs is a wholesome egg with a small embryo and loads of runny yolk and albumin. When it has recognized similar to an egg, it coils its lengthy, skinny physique round it to maintain it in place and proceeds to work its elastic head and jaws across the encapsulated meal. The bones forming the cranium and the decrease jaw of the snake are held collectively very loosely enabling the animal to get its gums round objects which can be far wider than its head. With meticulous care the snake edges the egg into its mouth. Exerting an excessive amount of power and breaking the egg at this level could be most unlucky because the nutritious fl uids would ebb away. As quickly because the egg has been edged down into the throat the mouth might be realigned and closed. With its mouth closed and the egg midway down its throat, the snake seems to be prefer it has swallowed a ball and to the human bystander the entire course of seems to be fairly painful. The muscle groups of the snake and peristaltic waves in its throat power the egg additional alongside till it comes into contact with some specifically tailored vertebrae. On their inside floor these bones bear a rasping, noticed like edge and after being repeatedly brushed towards them the egg cracks and its contents slide into the snake’s stomach. Using its muscular throat the snake squeezes the shattered egg to fully empty it of its contents. The remnants are compacted right into a small, elongate pellet, which is duly regurgitated.

Key Facts

  • The widespread egg-consuming snake is one in every of six species, divided into the African and Indian species. There are 5 African egg-consuming snakes and one Indian species, which is sort of uncommon. The African species are all present in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Egg-eaters don’t have enamel as they might rupture the egg shell earlier than it handed safely into the throat.
  • A snake’s head and jaws are distinctive within the animal kingdom. The bones are held collectively so loosely that the entire construction can fl ex tremendously permitting massive objects to be swallowed. Unlike all different terrestrial vertebrates the bone of the decrease jaw is definitely composed of two separate items linked collectively by connective tissue. These modifications enable snakes to work their head and mandible over the prey.
  • The modified feeding equipment of the snakes permits them to escape the constraints on meal measurement imposed by their skinny our bodies. Some of the vipers have eyes which can be far bigger than their stomach. They can swallow and digest prey objects which can be bigger than themselves, the one Challenge being that such a big meal takes a whole lot of digesting. The prey can rot earlier than it's digested and the snake can die in consequence.
  • As snakes can soak up a considerable amount of food directly and are very environment friendly at changing it into physique mass they will survive for lengthy durations between meals. In captivity egg-consuming snakes solely want to eat about as soon as each month, typically even much less.
  • When threatened, egg-consuming snakes coil and uncoil, rubbing their scales towards each other. Thisproduces a hissing or rasping sound and is accompanied by fast lunges with the open mouth.
  • Because of its uncommon feeding habits the egg-consuming snake is a favourite amongst snake fanciers in all places. They are fairly tough to preserve in a vivarium as a continuing provide of small eggs is required. They haven't been reared in captivity, so all specimens in zoos and non-public collections have been taken from the wild, which has vital implications for the populations of these snakes of their pure habitats. The Indian species is essentially the most endangered egg eater, due to the quickly increasing human inhabitants on this a part of the world.