Australia is home to a variety of venomous snakes, but one of the lesser-known and highly dangerous species is the eastern small-eyed snake. This snake, which is native to Australia’s eastern coast, is often overlooked due to its small size and subtle appearance. However, its venomous bite can result in a range of symptoms, including paralysis and respiratory failure.
The eastern small-eyed snake typically grows to around 40cm in length and has a slender body and small, beady eyes. Its colouration is quite variable, ranging from dark brown to olive-green, with a distinctive dark brown stripe down the length of its body. Despite its small size, this snake packs a powerful venomous punch that can cause serious harm if not treated promptly.
The venom of the eastern small-eyed snake is primarily neurotoxic, meaning it attacks the nervous system of its prey or victims. If bitten, symptoms can include numbness and tingling in the extremities, difficulty breathing, and paralysis of the limbs. In severe cases, the venom can cause respiratory failure, which can be fatal without prompt medical treatment.
Unlike some of Australia’s more well-known venomous snakes, the eastern small-eyed snake tends to avoid confrontation with humans and will usually only bite if provoked or threatened. However, due to its small size and cryptic behaviour, it can often be difficult to spot, and accidental encounters are not uncommon.
The best way to avoid being bitten by an eastern small-eyed snake is to avoid provoking or handling them. If you do encounter a small-eyed snake, it’s important to give it a wide berth and seek professional assistance if necessary. If you suspect you have been bitten, seek medical attention immediately and do not attempt to self-treat or apply any first aid measures.
While the eastern small-eyed snake may be small and unassuming, it’s a highly dangerous and venomous species that should not be underestimated. If you live in an area where these snakes are present, it’s important to educate yourself about their habits and behaviour, and take appropriate precautions to avoid encounters. By being aware of the dangers of the eastern small-eyed snake, you can help keep yourself and your community safe from harm.