Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite patient

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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Martti Niskanen » Sat Nov 26, 2016 12:27 pm

Just out of interest, is this going to be a sensible thread at some point or just another bero-dickfest?

Harry's BSc- thesis is interesting, and rather clear. Read the project-plan.
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Ruggero Morimando » Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:11 pm

Human fear for snakes was clearly an (interesting) off topic.
I've read the purpose of the study, and I've said at once that it's interesting, but at the same time I've moved some reflections.

This is the background of the study: "A KEY PREDICTION for a defensive venom function is that it should cause near-instant severe pain, to repel a predator before the snake has been killed or injured.A KEY PREDICTION for a defensive venom function is that it should cause near-instant severe pain, to repel a predator before the snake has been killed or injured. If the pain only arose after a delay, the predator will have already killed the snake making venom useless as a defensive strategy.The aim of the project is to gain a greater understanding of defensive selective pressures in the evolution of snake venom.. The aim of the project is to gain a greater understanding of defensive selective pressures in the evolution of snake venom."

Are we really sure that a painless but incredibly powerful venom like the one of a Taipan would be useless for defensive purposes?
I've seen many fights of cats vs snakes on the web (or dogs vs snakes): most of those fights were against not venomous snakes, and many of these were rather long (minutes of fight). I think that if in such a fight (cat vs O.taeniurus for instance) would have been a Taipan, a cat could have been killed in a matter of seconds after a well assigned bite and the snake could have survived...

Are we really sure that pain will scare a dog, a wolf, a wild boar or a big cat? Or would pain on the contrary raise fight willingness, anger and attention in these predators?

For bites happening inside vegetation, are we sure that causing pain would be so useful for a snake? Or would pain rather attract attention of a cow, horse or dog towards the biting snake?

I hope my questions are intopic now... :D
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Ruggero Morimando » Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:30 pm

P.s. Last but not least (I had forgotten): are we sure that mammals cannot "remember" the effects of a venomous bite, even if the pain they suffered from was not an immediate one?
In this case evolution would reward anyway the effects of the venom even if the offending snake had been maybe killed: other snakes of the same species will scare the same predator, if its memory is good enough...
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Berislav Horvatic » Sat Nov 26, 2016 8:41 pm

Martti Niskanen wrote:Just out of interest, is this going to be a sensible thread at some point or just another bero-dickfest?

I did my best, several times, to steer the discussion back to the original issue – so why a "bero-dickfest”
label in the first place? Why not someone else's "dickfest" - if there has ever been one at all?

Harry's BSc- thesis is interesting, and rather clear. Read the project-plan.

Yes, I’ve read it. Interesting and rather clear, yes. Reasonable & promising/fruitful, no. But Ruggero
seems to have finally reverted to the original problem, so (I will gladly) let him suffer...
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Martti Niskanen » Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:09 pm

Berislav Horvatic wrote:Yes, I’ve read it. Interesting and rather clear, yes.


And we're done. Still finding Harry's thesis very interesting. Bring it on, Harry! Looking forward to the thesis/theses and results
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Berislav Horvatic » Thu Dec 01, 2016 10:26 pm

Just allow me a final comment: If he gathers enough response, we’ll get some statistics,
interesting and usable as such, but not answering the principal question posed as the
primary aim of the study, actually, the only aim. That was my original question, which
noone bothered to tackle.
But I won't insist on that any more.
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Re: Defensive Snake Venom? A survey of pain in snakebite pat

Postby Ilian Velikov » Fri Dec 02, 2016 10:50 am

Martti Niskanen wrote:Berislav Horvatic wrote:
Yes, I’ve read it. Interesting and rather clear, yes.


And we're done. Still finding Harry's thesis very interesting. Bring it on, Harry! Looking forward to the thesis/theses and results


I've been reading this thread carefully and I appologise that I'll briefly go off-topic again. Martti, I don't think you or anybody else has the right to tell somebody when they are "done" talking or not. This together with your "dick-fest" comments are very arrogant and as you can see have basically killed the thread as everybody stopped writing. On the other hand Berislav's comments which you find so annoying pose good questions and stir discussions that are rather interesting for me and and apparently other people (who took part). If on every post here we just write "good job", "nice photos" and so on this forum would be a very boring place. This is not a testimony page but a place where people share and discuss stuff.

And to get back on topic - Yes, it is an interesting study but as with many others it would create more questions than answers. Which is of course is fine and is a step towards answering those questions. My opinion is that snake venom evolved as means of hunting and secondary doubles up as protection, and caution (if not fear) of snakes in humans(and many other animals) has some roots in our genes through evolution. Then it is either accelerated into fear or fascination by culture and many accidental experiences throughout our lifetimes.
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