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If you don't have a copy of the TPW magazine, you may print a copy
of S-s-s-snakes Alive.

Definitions and Context

Brille: Clear, protective scales that cover eyes
Context: the snakes eyes are protected, even when it is asleep, by brille.

Brumation: A state of dormancy or extreme slowing down due to cold temperatures
Context: Snakes and other reptiles enter brumation during the winter when it is too cold to function.

Ectothermic: body temperature changes according to the air temperature
Context: Snakes are ectothermic, they use the heat of the sun to warm themselves.

Endothermic: body temperature stays stable when air temperature changes
Context: Birds and mammals can live in cold places because they are endothermic and can stay warm in spite of the cold air.

Fangs: Sharp teeth-like points used by venomous snakes to inject venom into prey
Context: Only venomous snakes have fangs.

Forked: Split on the end
Context: The snake flicks its forked tongue to smell its prey.

Pit: Special organs between eyes and nostrils on certain snakes that detect heat
Context: A pit allows the snake to find warm-blooded animals such as small mammals and birds in the dark.

Poisonous: would make you sick if you ate it
Context: Monarch butterflies are poisonous; birds that eat them get sick.

Predator: an animal that kills and eats other animals
Context: Snakes are helpful because as predators they are responsible for controlling mouse and rat populations.

Scales: Small, flat pieces that overlap making up a snake's dry protective covering
Context: Snakes scales, like fish scales are for protection.

Scutes: Thick, large scales on the snake's belly.
Context: Scutes help the snake climb steep surfaces.

Venomous: can bite or sting and inject a harmful toxin
Context: The bite of a venomous snake is very painful.