Black mamba strikes at car: true or false? - Page 5





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  1. #81
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    It's amazing what the mind does to things when a little primordial instinct kicks in.

    If you don't deal with snakes or creepy crawlies (or for that matter large mammals) every day, you tend to react with fear when you see them.

    that means (a) your butthole clamps up tight to prevent you soiling yourself and (b) everything gets magnified. It's called Adrenalin.

    I swear that Solfugae thing the other day was bigger than my hand when I first saw it. the Doom must have made it shrink or something, turned out it was 'only' 3" long.

    so, yeah, when you see a 6m Mamba on the side of the road, it's probably only 3m.

    your face sitting in a bakkie in soft sand is only a metre or so off the ground , so yes, if a large one lunged at your vehicle it would easily hit the middle of the window, doesn't have to be huge, just an average sized one.

    People that deal with them all day every day look at such things far more clinically. and should possibly also remember that 'professional' interactions are different from 'casual ' interactions with an animal, and the animal may react diferently to a person speeding past, or running/behaving excitedly (scared) than to their calm and familiar approach.

    i.e. screaming like a girl and dancing around will probably annoy a mamba a lot more than someone observing it quietly.

    A 'professional' will probably spot the snake a long way off, and approach slowly, a clumsy amateur like me will only realise it's there when I'm right next to it. so reactions of both snake and person will differ hugely.

    and I'm sure that mamba's will have a 'pik' at anything that they feel is threatening, or at least put on a display of doing so, whether it be a passing car or cow...
    Last edited by Apocalypse; 2014/01/21 at 09:53 AM.

  2. #82
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    ...anybody thinking that a black mamba can't kill large animals are mistaken.

    On 10 October 2003, sometime between 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm local time, a full grown female African elephant named Eleanor that weighed around 7,500 lb (3,400 kg) at Saraburu National Park in Kenya was bitten by a black mamba. The effects of the venom were rapid; a short time later Eleanor began to slow down, showed an unsteady gait and began to fall behind the rest of the herd, which was highly unusual behaviour for a matriarch, who is always ahead of the herd and leading the way. Not long after, Eleanor fell to the ground and was helped up by another elephant until she fell again and never got up. The bite was fatal to the matriarch, who suffered for a lengthy period of time (just under 24 hours) from the effects of the venom before finally dying. The dramatic images show one elephant, Grace, who was a matriarch of a different herd, struggling to help the 40-year-old matriarch Eleanor, who lay on the ground, languishing in agony and struggling to breath as a result of the black mamba bite. The footage, shot by scientists at Samburu National Reserve in Kenya, show Grace calling out in distress and making desperate attempts to get the dying elephant back onto her feet.
    I'm all for not overdoing the "BIG KILLER" image that these impressive animals carry around, but at the same time, don't sell it short. They demand due respect.
    Last edited by Sakkie; 2014/01/21 at 10:06 AM.
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  3. #83
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    ok, let me relate my experiences.

    Growing up we were the last house on the road with a huge bushy area next to us. (this is in durban)

    We used to find lots of snakes around
    One day the neighbour called my dad to remove a snake which they managed to trap inside the holes of a brick. they placed another brick over that one trapping it.

    I must have been around 14 at the time and went down to their place where there was another kid about the same age.

    So i ask him where is the snake and he joking responds its in the drain for the gutters that run down the side of the house. They had covers over the drains.

    Knowing he is lying I put my head there and lifted the cover. By chance there was a black mamba in there. It was as surprised as i was. It turned its head and came face to face with me. It's tongue actually touched me between my eyebrows. I slowly pulled my head back and put the cover down. Ran home to change my underwear.

    Speaking of mambas and vehicles, there was a resident mamba in the bush next to us. was over 2m in length. Once it jumped over my dad's Datsun 720 bakkie (with canopy and roof rack). The head came around to the driver window which was open but luckily the weight of the rest of the body flying over the bakkie pulled the head out again.
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    Just look at this 2m + Mamba my brother caught behind our fridge in the Mkhuze game reserve this December holiday. SWAMBO is standing safely at considerable distance.... or is she....

    While this is scary, what scared me most was when we released it back into the veld (some 2km away) that snake shot out of the bag at a speed that you will not be able to match! And then it disappeared into the grass..... extremely well camouflaged!

    brrrrrr!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fouchee View Post
    Guys , after a close encounter with a black mamba which I shot (smallish one measured 1,4m) I saw a documentary on the dish on the black mamba. This was about 10 years ago and one of the incidents covered in the doc was a participant in the Duzi River canoe marathon that got bit by one and laid in hospital whilst hearing how doctors discussed with his family to switch off the machines that was keeping him alive at the time. Now in this documentary they showed a mamba lifting itself extremely high off the ground in relation to its total body length , could be less than 2/3 but definitely more than 1/3. It was also noted that this was classified as the fastest snake for two main reasons : 1. Speed of its strike and speed at which it strikes repeatedly 2. Sailing speed on the ground which was indicated as 17kmh. What was most impressive (or disturbing) was how agile and fast this snake was sailing in the raised position with much more than 1/3 of it's body length raised albeit only for a short distance.
    Having said this , I feel more at ease after reading Mr snakeman jmsnake's reply. I think a lot of the described incidents are physically possible for this snake , however it might not necessarily be the norm
    That was my boet. He was bitten twice on the inside of his knee. He was kept in a coma for a week or so, and dam nearly died. But he is fit and fighting again, and doesnt even have a scar to prove it.

    And we never discussed switching the machines off.
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    scary stuff bugs!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sakkie View Post
    ...anybody thinking that a black mamba can't kill large animals are mistaken.



    I'm all for not overdoing the "BIG KILLER" image that these impressive animals carry around, but at the same time, don't sell it short. They demand due respect.
    Thanks for sharing Sakkie. It just shows, respect is earned.

    I must also agree with Apoc, adrenalin does ad significant magnifying glasses to our eyes / imagination.

    Then I also think the herpo's are seeing things smaller than they should or clearly they dont know where to get big mamba's, go to Vaalwater and Ellisras I am sure you will be surprised

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    Quote Originally Posted by Apocalypse View Post
    scary stuff bugs!!!
    What was interesting is that they never used anti venom. Merely kept him in a coma. He had his heart rate monitor on him all the time and tried to get his heart rate down.

    Funny thing about this story, is they sent a helicopter to take him to hospital, and the pilot refused to take him as he was too big for the copter and his legs stuck out the other side. They had to get another copter.

    We can joke about it now, but for a good ten days we thought his system would fail. Apparently his heart rate in hospital was extremely high, and if he wasn't so fit and so big and if he had an adverse reaction to the poison, he wouldn't be with us anymore.
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  9. #89
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    Morne's picture is merely an art installation on the corner of a road in Australia, that is a fake snake and it has been verified as such.
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  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugs View Post
    What was interesting is that they never used anti venom. Merely kept him in a coma. He had his heart rate monitor on him all the time and tried to get his heart rate down.

    Funny thing about this story, is they sent a helicopter to take him to hospital, and the pilot refused to take him as he was too big for the copter and his legs stuck out the other side. They had to get another copter.

    We can joke about it now, but for a good ten days we thought his system would fail. Apparently his heart rate in hospital was extremely high, and if he wasn't so fit and so big and if he had an adverse reaction to the poison, he wouldn't be with us anymore.
    whahahhahahha!!!

    This could only happen to you and yours bugs!!!

    SEND A BIGGER HELICOPTER!!!!

    funny!

    I'm sure not at the time though!

  11. #91
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    A few years ago, I was sitting at Madikwe airstrip waiting for guests to fly them back to Johannesburg. I was just stretching my legs a bit and saw this Mamba coming across the gravel airstrip directly towards me. Got right back in the plane and closed the door..(for those interested..Cessna 402c). This mamba came right up to the wingtip and stared me in the face...mouth gaping...I could see the black inside its mouth. After about 2-3 minutes it dropped down and...returned from where it came. Methinks it had a nest very close to the airstrip...did'nt go look for it. Scary??...Yes!
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  12. #92
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    Hi Bugs
    do you have a link to that doc? Think they did interview him as well??Would love to watch it again , not to see your boet close to dying but to check the actual footage of the snake's capabilities under discussion?
    Small world!! I clearly remember a section where he could hear discussions in his room but could not respond and remembered it being "life threatening" discussions....
    anyway , red wine could've had an affect on my 10 year memory software...

  13. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugs View Post
    What was interesting is that they never used anti venom.
    Up to a couple of years ago all Black Mamba bites were fatal. It is only more recently that it was discovered that, following a bite, you can keep a person alive with artificial respiration etc. The body will by itself get rid of the poison. Overly simplified, it's not the poison that kills. It stops you from breathing and THAT kills you.
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  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dawid View Post
    Maybe it was mating season and he liked your 'snake'
    Hehe, maybe he saw that he will come second best when I stood up, and turned around!
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    Quote Originally Posted by carlp View Post
    Thanks for sharing Sakkie. It just shows, respect is earned.

    I must also agree with Apoc, adrenalin does ad significant magnifying glasses to our eyes / imagination.

    Then I also think the herpo's are seeing things smaller than they should or clearly they dont know where to get big mamba's, go to Vaalwater and Ellisras I am sure you will be surprised
    +1

    I have lived in the area for 23 years and have seen plenty BIG mambas.
    I shot one in 2003 that measured 2.79m and it was a large specimen but I have seen bigger ones than that.

    Catching them , measuring them and releasing them however is not too high on my wishlist.

    I only had one "incident" during all this time with a Mamba , I was extremely lucky not to be bitten. http://4x4community.co.za/forum/showthread.php?t=164963

    I encounter Mambas often driving/walking around/tracking/patrolling. I was never chased, no mamba "jumped" into my bakkie or gameviewer (touch wood)

    Most of the time the snake would just move away quietly and I leave it in peace. HOWEVER...... I will never approach or intrude into the "personal space" of a Black Mamba. My experience is that they are skittish and aggressive if they perceive you to be a threat. If they feel threatened or feel that their escape route is being blocked , the risk of being bitten is very real imo. I give them a wide berth and normally they just move along and I do the same . It is still a scary experience for me because it almost always happen when you expect it the least.

    I carry oxygen in all the vehicles I use on the farm, I have a radio and can contact my neigbours if need be. We have 4 aircraft in the area and we have the emergency telephone numbers handy at all times.

    The risk being bitten by a Mamba is quite small imo. I am more concerned about Puffadders and Moz Spitting Cobras because I perceive the risk of being bitten by one of the species being far bigger (in this area)

    Reading through some of the posts I reckon that a lot of the stories are just folklore and "brannewyn sprokies" . Having said that, I have no doubt in my mind that if you get too close to a Mamba , whether it is in a vehicle , quad , bicycle or on foot , it will not hesitate to strike and strike repeatedly until the perceived threat is no more.
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  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugs View Post
    That was my boet. He was bitten twice on the inside of his knee. He was kept in a coma for a week or so, and dam nearly died. But he is fit and fighting again, and doesnt even have a scar to prove it.

    And we never discussed switching the machines off.
    Was just about to say, in canoeing circle, there was no discussion that we heard of. In fact, your boet was hellova composed through the whole thing, that saved him, along with the gentle swim from the sandbank to Papwa golf course where the doctor was playing (big luck daarso - imagine if had been Shabir Shaik playing !!??!!).

    Then having the organisers chopper land and call medi-rescue - lots of luck too. Smaak the fact that he paddled that last leg about 3 weeks later with the Non-Stop guys and got his medal.

    Paddled past that sand bank with my lightie on Sunday, I often used to get out there and have a drink and a stretch - no more, buy a donkey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugs View Post
    What was interesting is that they never used anti venom. Merely kept him in a coma. He had his heart rate monitor on him all the time and tried to get his heart rate down.

    Funny thing about this story, is they sent a helicopter to take him to hospital, and the pilot refused to take him as he was too big for the copter and his legs stuck out the other side. They had to get another copter.

    We can joke about it now, but for a good ten days we thought his system would fail. Apparently his heart rate in hospital was extremely high, and if he wasn't so fit and so big and if he had an adverse reaction to the poison, he wouldn't be with us anymore.
    The first chopper was Ray de Vries - the PRO for the organisers, was a little thing. He then radio'd for the MediVac chopper.

  18. #98
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    let's have some fun, who can estimate the length of this mamba for me?

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  19. #99
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    I guesstimate 2.1m
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  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenD View Post
    let's have some fun, who can estimate the length of this mamba for me?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Perhaps a tad over 2m.

    Edit - not as big as the last trout I caught :-)

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