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Showing posts from May, 2020

Snakes and Ladders

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Snakes and ladders: the race to curb snakebite mortalities in Central India This longform article covers roughly 150 years of research into snakebite mortalities, snake envenomation, and the reasons of snakebite-related deaths in central Indian states of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh – known to have among the highest death rate in India, majorly because of lack of effective medical care/availability of antivenom, treatment of resulting complications, time taken to reach healthcare centres, and beliefs in traditional antidotes. It also discusses the large gap in monitoring the mortalities and how researchers are innovating medical, ecological, and taxonomic studies of snakes and snakebite envenomation, tied in with my experiences of snake rescue and snake awareness in and around Kanha Tiger Reserve. This is a part of a larger piece tracing the ecological history of central India being presented here for its relevance. With monsoon around the corner, and predictions of new and o