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What is a Fierce Snake?

Anna T.
Updated Jun 04, 2024
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The fierce snake, also known as the inland taipan, is a type of snake that is native to Australia. Fierce snakes are normally black to brown in color with small dark specks and may grow to be as long as 8 feet (2.5 m) in length. The shade of the fierce snake might also change depending on the time of year. During the winter, fierce snakes tend to become darker so they can better absorb the heat from the sun. When summer comes, these snakes might appear lighter in color.

Fierce snakes survive on rats and other small mammals, and their numbers depend greatly on the population of these animals. In addition to small mammals, the fierce snake occasionally eats frogs and lizards. When fierce snakes kill their prey, they normally only need to strike one time because they tend to be incredibly fast and accurate when they hunt. The venom of a fierce snake is the most toxic in the world, and it only takes a small amount to kill any animal it comes across. The only other snakes that even come close to being as venomous as the fierce snake are the common brown snake and the taipan, both of which are also native to Australia.

The majority of fierce snakes can normally be found in the dry plains areas of Australia, typically around the section where the Northern Territory and Queensland meet. These snakes thrive in areas with little vegetation, and they might often be found hiding within deep cracks inside the soil. Temperatures in the plains areas of Australia during the summer can get incredibly high, and the cracks in the soil where fierce snakes often hide may give them some protection from the intense heat.

People in Australia rarely come in contact with fierce snakes because they are very shy creatures that avoid humans, and they are not typically found near residential areas. For this reason, reports of attacks by fierce snakes on humans are almost non-existent. The fierce snake is likely the most poisonous snake in the world, and it has been reported that one drop of venom from a fierce snake might be enough to kill 100 men. Even though fierce snakes are not considered to be endangered, they cannot survive without the presence of small mammals, particularly rats. When the rat population takes a hit, many fierce snakes die from a lack of food.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Anna T.
By Anna T.
Anna Thurman is a skilled writer who lends her talents to WiseGeek. Her ability to research and present information in an engaging and accessible manner allows her to create content that resonates with readers across a wide range of subjects.

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Discussion Comments
By Lostnfound — On Sep 26, 2014

I have to say: Australia is a beautiful country and I wouldn't mind visiting it, but I don't see how the residents live in such close proximity to so many very, very venomous snakes in their everyday lives. I'd be a complete mess. I hate snakes anyway, and seeing something like a brown snake in my garage would totally freak me out.

I've been told that the best business in Australia is that of snake removal and general critter catcher. I am not surprised. I imagine their services would be gratefully received and generously compensated! I know if I lived there and found any kind of snake in my house, I'd be willing to pay whatever the snake catcher wanted to get it *out!*

By Grivusangel — On Sep 25, 2014

I remember seeing Steve Irwin doing a segment about fierce snakes. He actually found one! He did mention several times how rare they are and that they are very shy and really do avoid human contact.

He said people in Australia were far more apt to encounter brown snakes, and they were much more aggressive and apt to bite than the fierce snake which, he said, would rather run than bite, if given the opportunity. The one he found got out of the area in a big hurry as soon as the crew stepped back from it. Clearly, it had no interest in being anywhere close to humans.

Anna T.
Anna T.
Anna Thurman is a skilled writer who lends her talents to WiseGeek. Her ability to research and present information in an engaging and accessible manner allows her to create content that resonates with readers across a wide range of subjects.
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