Cobras are venomous snakes related to taipans, coral snakes, and mambas, all members of the Elapidae family. Snakes in this family cannot fold their fangs down, as vipers can, so the fangs are generally shorter. They kill their prey by injecting venom through their fangs. The venom is a neurotoxin that stops the victim’s breathing and heartbeat. A cobra only attacks a human if it feels threatened. As with any venomous snake, a bite from a cobra can be deadly if not treated properly.
Cobras are famous for the threatening hood at their neck. They spread the hood out when they feel threatened or angry. Their hood is made up of flaps of skin attached to long ribs. They are also able to lift their heads high up off the ground, which is not only kinda scary, but helps them to search for food. And just to make them a little scarier, they hiss loudly to scare off potential predators.
There are 270 different types of Cobras and their relatives, including Taipans, Adders, Mambas, and many sea snakes including Kraits, and they all have short fangs and are all extremely poisonous.
Cobras live in hot tropical areas in Africa, Australia, and Southern Asia and their relatives, the Coral Snake, can be found in the United States. They can be found underground, in trees, and under rocks. The King Cobra is not only an excellent climber but a super swimmer as well. They live in forests near streams.
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