Snake Island: World Of Nightmares

By Morris M. on Wednesday, July 24, 2013
snake fang
“Never wound a snake; kill it.” —Harriet Tubman

In a Nutshell

Imagine an entire island composed of your worst fears, a place where vipers lurk in every bush and the ground writhes with the bodies of reptiles. Welcome to Snake Island, Brazil’s cure for your peaceful sleep.

The Whole Bushel

Off the coast of Sao Paulo sits an island where civilians are forbidden to tread. And for good reason—the entire island is flooded with snakes. Not just any snakes, either—Ilha de Queimada Grande is home to the golden lancehead, one of the meanest, deadliest snakes in the whole of creation.

Since no one has ever officially documented being bitten by a golden lancehead, we don’t know for sure what effect their venom has. However, a bite from a plain, boring, regular lancehead will result in nausea, vomiting, blood blisters, intestinal failure, brain hemorrhage, and expulsion of blood from nearly every orifice. By comparison, the golden lancehead’s bite is thought to be almost five times as powerful. And there are the stories as well—the “unofficial” records of people who strayed onto the island, only to suffer agonizing death.

One report claims that a fisherman was found in his boat, floating alongside the island’s beach. He’d been bitten so many times he’d literally sweated his insides out, leaving his boat awash with blood. Another (certainly apocryphal) tale tells of a family who lived in the island’s lighthouse, who woke up one night to find snakes pouring in the windows.

Regardless of their truth, the stories do highlight one fact: the sheer number of snakes on Ilha de Queimada Grande. By some accounts there are as many as five golden lanceheads per square meter. Since the entire island measures some 430,000 square meters (515,000 square yards), that comes to a rough total of . . . more deadly snakes than we can bear to think about.

Show Me The Proof

Surrounded By Death On Snake Island
Snake Island—Ilha De Queimada Grande
Bothrops insularis

  • Adeel

    How can so many snakes exist in one isolated place? I mean, if they haven’t done already, how long before they consume every prey possible on the island?

    • edzyl blane

      Maybe the snakes are the only natural predators in their ecosystem. Some snakes can become preys too especially if king cobra is around

  • rhijulbec

    I don’t mind snakes if I see them first…but that many on an island? Not so much. *does a Sideshow Bob ewwww*

  • Sabbyj

    There’s a Snake Island in Andaman & Nicobar Island, India.
    I went there a couple of years ago, and stayed a night. It was terrifying!
    There are said to be more than 31 species of snakes on that small island, and more than half of them poisonous!

  • Bored

    What are such deadly, poisonous snakes doing on an isolated island? What purpose does this serve? I’m going to look up the evolutionary advantage of the snakes on this island. I love these articles because I do my OWN research after reading these snippets.

    • moistmulattoman

      that is what i enjoy aswell

    • Malcolm Broadhurst

      Wow, you do research by reading other peoples research. Explain to me how that works?

  • MR

    more visual content.

  • Guest

    Zimmerman should go there for vacay.

  • David Anderson

    I want to go there

  • Dr. Matthew D. Zarzeczny, FINS

    Is anyone allowed to submit articles to KnowledgeNuts, just as we do with Listverse? Are the KnowledgeNuts contributors similarly paid as well? As a historian, I could probably think of some gems to add here if you’re interested. Thanks!

  • Timone

    Morris your knowledgenuts titles are always so epic I love it lol. Very good article btw

  • Ihsan YoungsterPro

    Terima kasih pak, artikel ini sangat membantu dan bermanfaat dan saya sudah terapkan
    terima kasih ^^


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