Be Even More Careful Now With Critter Bites


I came across this story this morning.
Why Snakebites Are About to Get a Lot More Deadly.

The cure for bites from North American coral snakes is about to disappear. Find out why an unprofitable antivenom may end up costing lives.

What the article’s title doesn’t include is the anti-venom for Black Widows and scorpions is in very short supply, just as we are in the summer vacation season.

Antivenom shortages are a surprisingly common occurrence. The entire state of Arizona ran out of antivenom for scorpion stings after Marilyn Bloom, an envenomation specialist at Arizona State University, retired in 1999. Bloom had been single-handedly making all the scorpion antivenom for state hospitals. Recently, Merck & Co, the only FDA-licensed producer of black widow antivenom, has cut back distribution because of a production shortage of the drug. In a 2007 report, the World Health Organization listed worldwide envenomations as a “neglected public health issue.”

Granted, Coral snake bites are rare and most bites on humans that are of concern is when one of those nasty rascals climbs into the bed, bunk or sleeping bag and have time to really gnaw on the victim and roll over to insure the venom is introduced.

Just be careful out there and watch those young ones.

20 Responses

  1. most bites on humans that are of concern is when one of those nasty rascals climbs into the bed

    dang — now I’m going to have snake dreams.

    hate them things.

    • Well, they’re all over the place here, so you have to be kinda cautious where you put the feet/hands. I nearly got a pygmy rattler when I was raking/picking up branches. Their camouflage is sooooo good! “My” rat snakes treat me like a tree or other inanimate object and don’t react to a quiet stroke on the back as I pass by.

      If it weren’t for the snakes, we’d have an even worse time with rats.

    • I would be a lot more worried if I was out camping or for kids at summer camp.

  2. Thanks for the heads up, n2l. We do have coral snakes here; before, I was inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt. Now, I don’t want to have the grandkids possibly grabbing one when there’s no cure for a bite.

    I foresee coral snakes becoming extinct as soon as people realize this.

  3. No matter how careful you may be, still there’s always a chance that you may suffer from one of these disgusting creatures. And without anti venom it’s even more frightening to think about it.

  4. Dad,

    Just what you needed, more reasons to be afraid of snakes. Poor Mrs. Nuke. Now she’ll never get any sleep!!

    • yeah, she hates it when I have snake dreams.

      • You just need to dream that all snakes are good snakes and how you helped them become so good.

      • Hey, n2l, you snake murderer! We HAVE to have snakes to keep the rodents under control.

      • there was the one when I dreamt I was asleep in my sleeping bag and in my dream, I woke up to find that a snake had crawled in my bag.

        It’s pretty funny to hear Mrs. Nuke tell it. She recalls waking up that night to a blood-curdling scream from my side of the bed, kicking and thrashing, she thought I was having a seizure.

      • Hey Swampie, all your rodents are belong to me.

      • GREAT! Give me your mailing address, and I’ll have the first box on the way via Federal Express.

      • SwampMan has had a recurring dream of being in a small room and a gorilla comes in since childhood. You can always tell when he’s having the gorilla dream because he starts screaming and thrashing in his sleep.

        It used to happen frequently. It has tapered off the longer we’ve been married because waking me up by screaming in my ear during a nightmare or thrashing around during the nightmare and whopping me is waaay, WAAAY worse than being locked in a room with a gorilla.

      • Dang.
        The only recurring dreams I have are the kind you don’t want to end.

  5. N2L, tsk, tsk, tsk.

    I guess the worst dream I had was a couple of years back. I was looking for a fishing spot at one of the local lakes and walked into a cove and a big snake lunged at me.
    My body was drenched in ice cold sweat and was shaking like I was in a bad earthquake when I woke up.

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