RattleSnake Body Systems

Crotalus atrox

Integumentary system

Rattle snakes have scales, but what are these scales useful for?

- they give the snake camouflage.

- provides a water proof and water retaining coat for the snake.

- allows the snake to move and use friction to its advantage.

- they protect the snake as they can poke a predator in an attempt to eat it.

- they create the rattle at the end of the snake's tail.


What is the rattlesnake's scales made of?

- keratin, like our nails.

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Bibliography


Papagiorgia, Nicole. "What Is the Function of Scales on Reptiles?" EHow. Demand Media., 09 June 2010. Web. 24 Sept. 2014.

Skeletal System

- is made up of:

Skull

Angled teeth (including hollow fangs for venom)

Vertebrate

Ribs

And in some cases, a underdeveloped pelvic bone with "spurs"


-The skull is special for two reasons:

The skull and lower jaw connect at the farthest point in the back, allowing the mouth to open extremely wide.

The two halves of the bottom are not fused, allowing the jaw to split to help swallow larger prey.

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Muscular System

The muscles have two main purposes:


-To move food along while digesting (smooth muscles lining the organs)

-For movement


Types of movement include:


-serpentine (also known as slithering)

-sidewinding (found in rattlesnakes that live in the desert with loose sand)

-tail shaking (for the rattle)

Bibliography


Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 7 Oct. 2014.

Rattlesnake Nervous System

Like most reptiles rattlesnakes have a brain and a spinal cord. And also like reptiles, it's brain is slightly smaller than the rest of its body.


But the snake has a special sense of smell. It senses things with its Jacobson's organ, an organ found on the roof of its mouth to aid in smelling the air. It gathers the scents with its forked tongue and the organ senses the smells when the snake retracts its tongue.


Rattlesnakes also have a dual-sight system in which including their eyes, the snakes can also "see" infrared images using the sensory organs in its mouth.

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Bibliography


"Rattlesnakes - National Wildlife Federation." Rattlesnakes - National Wildlife Federation. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Oct. 2014.


Dowling, Herndon G. "Reptile (animal)." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 31 Oct. 2014.


Ivanyi, Craig. "Rattlesnakes." Rattlesnakes. Association of Zoo & Aquariums, n.d. Web. 30 Oct. 2014.

Respiratory System

Starts from:

-trachea

-bronchi

-lungs

-air sac.


Rattlesnakes have two lungs: a right long one (with an large air sac) and a left vestigal lung with no function.


While the front half of the right lung is where gas exchange occurs, the back end of the lung where the air sac lies is a pressure control center for the snake.


Due to the fact that the snake doesn't have a diaphragm, the snakes muscles and ribs allow the snake to gather air into the lung.


It should also be noted that the snakes have a special tube in their mouth called a Glottis that functions as a second airway when the snake is eating something and the food is blocking the main airway.

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Bibliography


Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014.


"Snake Respiratory System." WikiVet. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014.

Circulatory System

-have a Three-Chambered heart:

Two atria

One ventricle


-Heart can move around.

Protects it from being hindered by food while feeding.


-Renal Portal System

- Blood passes through kidneys to be filtered before moving on to the main system.


-thymus gland is in charge of the maturation of immune cells in the blood.

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Bibliography


MADER, DOUGLAS. "Snake Cardiovascular System Anatomy." Reptiles Magazine. I-5 Publishing, n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2014.


Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2014.

Endocrine System

Snakes have:

-a single thyroid gland

- two thymus glands

- two pairs of parathyroids

- a pair of adrenals

- a pituitary gland

- a pancreas


If a parathyroid is accidentally removed, it can cause hypocalcaemia and tetanic convulsions.


There is a connection between moulting and the thyroid gland.


The thymus decreases in weight as the snake ages.

Digestive System

The digestive system of a snake includes:

The esophagus

The stomach

The small intestine

The colon

The liver

The gallbladder

The pancreas


The esophagus has very little muscle, and most movement is made by the movement of the snake's body.


The stomach and small intestine are very simple in anatomy.


The liver is the largest organ in the body.

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Bibliography


"Snake Endocrine System." WikiVet. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.


Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.

Excretory System

Kidneys:

- elongated

- the right is closer to the head than the left.


Snakes lack a urinary bladder so the urine isn't stored.


Food from the colon is emptied into the cloaca along with the urine and excreted there.

Bibliography

Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.

Reproductive system

Uses internal reproduction

Have gonads

-females: ovaries

-males: testes

Right gonad is closer to the head than the left

Rattlesnakes are oviparous

-they produce eggs

Snakes lack a epidiymides

The males have a organ called hemipenes that is also present in females.

- May have a part to hold onto the female during fertilization.

Bibliography


"Snake Reproductive System." WikiVet. N.p., n.d. Web. 5 Dec. 2014.


Foster, Dr, and Dr Smith. "Snake Anatomy and Physiology." Pet Education. Foster and Smith, Inc., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.