Can Snakes Survive in the Cold?
Snakes are cold-blooded creatures, meaning they use their environment to regulate their body temperature. Most snakes can’t deal with cold temperatures, and they prefer warm weather and warmth.
However, some species of snake are specially adapted to living in cold climates – these are the so-called ‘cold-weather snakes’.
Types of Cold-Weather Snake
The three species of cold-weather snake are:
- Horned Viper: This species of snake lives in the mountainous regions of the Middle East, typically in rocky areas and grassland. They are well adapted to the cold weather and use it to their advantage to hunt.
- Burmese Python: This species of snake lives in Southeastern Asia and is adapted to living in cool and humid environments. It is able to survive in areas with temperatures as low as 7 degrees Celsius.
- Rough Green Snake: This species inhabits North America and the Eastern Mediterranean region. It is particularly well adapted to living in cool climates and is able to survive temperatures as low as 4 degrees Celsius.
How do Cold-Weather Snakes Survive?
Cold-weather snakes have several unique adaptations that enable them to survive the cold. These include:
- Behavioural Adaptations: Cold-weather snakes tend to be nocturnal, meaning they will only hunt and move around at night when it is a bit warmer.
- Physiological Adaptations: Cold-weather snakes have thick, insulating scales that help to conserve their body heat and prevent them from freezing.
In short, some species of snakes are specially adapted to living in cold climates and can survive temperatures as low as 4 degrees Celsius. They do this by exhibiting certain behaviours and having physiological adaptations such as thick scales.