Animal Rights

Snake Impaled With Dozens Of Porcupine Quills (Video)

| by David Bonner

A boa constrictor in Brazil made the mistake of confronting a porcupine and ended up with dozens of painful quills stuck all over it's body (video below).

The video was first posted on LiveLeak, reports the Daily Mail. The snake appears to be writhing in pain as someone filmed it for almost two minutes. Eventually, a dog enters the picture and begins barking at it.

Observing the helpless reptile, one user wrote: "Help the poor thing out."

Another said: "Bad day for the snake. Put it out of its misery. Looks painful."

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Boa constrictors typically consist on a diet of bats, mice, birds and lizards, the Daily Mail notes. It reports that the large snakes digest their meals for up to six days.

In June 2015, a python in South Africa died after ingesting a porcupine whole. It happened at the Lake Eland Game Reserve in KwaZul-Natal, South Africa, reports website Live Science.

Jennifer Fuller, the general manager at the Reserve, explained that it isn't unusual for pythons to eat porcupines, and authorities were not able to determine whether or not the porcupine was actually responsible for the python's death.

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Rangers found the dead snake underneath a ledge, where it had likely fallen. On impact, the ingested porcupine's quills presumably pierced the python's intestines, which could have killed the animal, Fuller said.

Live Science notes that many species of snakes eat porcupines and other horned or quilled animals, citing a study published in 2003 in the Phyllomedusa Journal of Herpetology titled: "Prickly Food: Snakes Preying Upon Porcupines."

The researchers who authored the article say that when a snake eats a porcupine, the animal's quills are left undigested and are easily detectable in the snake's gut. Sometimes, the quills will even pierce all the way through the snake's body, they write.

Humans can also eat porcupines, according to survivalist experts at the website Wide Open Spaces. "If you’re hungry, one porcupine can feed you for days, supplying you with protein and energy."

And there's reportedly no need to cook it, because the meat is safe, thanks to the standard porcupine diet of plant, twigs, leaves and tree bark. The rodent's liver is said to be delicious when chilled in snow and eaten fresh.

And getting stuck with quills is where having hands gives humans a huge advantage over snakes. It is recommended to snip them before trying to pull them out, which is said makes the quill loosen in the skin.

Sources: Daily Mail, YouTube, Live Science, Wide Open Spaces / Photo credit: Daily Mail

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