Talk:Monocled cobra

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Please clarify: Venom[edit]

Pain and swelling may often follow after the bite. It causes many deaths within its range.

May often follow? So, it's uncertain how often? It could quite as easily be never at all then? How many is many? are there many deaths, because its venom is so lethal or is it because it bites everything that moves within range? SavannahD (talk) 18:23, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

One reason there are many deaths (I don't have up-to-date stats handy for the Thai cobra, sorry) is that people capture them to use for "snake charming," "traditional medicine," and other dubious activities, or try to kill them, provoking them to defend themselves (human-provoked snakebites are known as illegitimate bites). Barefoot agricultural workers are vulnerable to legitimate (accidental) bites. Cobras certainly do not bite whenever they have an opportunity; like all snakes, they are shy creatures and although they will defend themselves are not aggressive. Also, venomous snakes prefer to save their venom for something they can eat, so a defensive bite is most often used as a last resort.
Cobras, like most elapids (a family of snakes that also includes coralsnakes, mambas, seasnakes, and about 80% of snake species native to Australia), have predominantly neurotoxic venom; the article is I think trying to say that while there may be local swelling and pain, the danger of death is due to the venom's ability to paralyse the muscles, making it impossible to breathe without mechanical ventilation. This is why elapid venom is so toxic and can cause death so quickly in the absence of medical care. Another cause of the high rate of snakebite death in Asia is that people often seek out "traditional healers" who may use ineffective and even harmful "medicine," rather than going to the hospital where they can receive antivenom and appropriate supportive treatment. (talk) 15:42, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

intro is ambiguous[edit]

"...a circular mark behind the hood, unlike that of the Indian cobra."

This should probably be clarified: the Monacled Cobra only has one ocellus while the Indian Cobra (aka Spectacled Cobra) has two. (talk) 15:49, 14 July 2011 (UTC)