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Facts: Wild Hunger

A close-up of a snake's fangs while a man exposes them using a stick.

A close-up of a snake's fangs while a man exposes them using a stick. (View larger version)

Photograph by NGT

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  • The Asiatic black bear, also known as the moon bear, is closely related to the American black bear and even looks similar to its North American cousin except for its characteristic large, round ears and the crescent-moon-shaped marking on its chest.

  • 50 toxic varieties of venomous snakes live in India, and every year, they bite an estimated 200,000 people and kill nearly 50,000 men, women, and children. Nearly 10,000 of these fatalities are attributable to just four species: the saw-scaled viper, Indian krait, Russell's Viper, and the Indian cobra.

  • The saw-scaled viper hides underground to avoid the intense heat of the sun.

  • The saw-scaled viper is named for the serrated scales found on either side of its body.

  • As many as 100,000 people die from snakebites each year.

  • Rats are a significant threat to rice crops in India.

  • The Russell’s Viper is one of the deadliest snakes in India.

  • Snakebite anti-venom is made from the unique venom of each venomous snake species.

  • There is only one species of domestic horse but hundreds of breeds.

  • Bear bile is a valuable commodity for use as an ingredient in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

  • It is likely that humans first hunted and domesticated horses for use as a food source.

  • The common krait is thought to kill nearly half of all the humans it bites.

  • Every year, tens of thousands of U.S. horses are sent to Canada and Mexico to be slaughtered, and their meat is then shipped to Europe for human consumption.

  • There are roughly one million collisions between wildlife and vehicles on U.S. roads every year.

  • Deer are the most common large animal involved in vehicle collisions by far.
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