Characteristic Features Of The Different Species Of Snakes

Those having hoods and marked with spots resembling a wheel or a plough, an umbrella or a cross (Svastika) or a goad (Amkusa) on their heads and are extremely swift, should be known as the Darvi-kara snakes. Those which are large and slow and marked with parti-coloured ring-like or circular spots on their skin, and have the glow of the sun or fire should be known as Mandali snakes, while those which are glossy and whose bodies are painted with parti coloured horizontal, perpendicular and lateral stripes, should be known as the RŠjiman species 6.

* It should be noted here that coming in contact with thorns and nails, etc., if unnoticed, may also produce in the minds of persons the fear of having been bitten by a snake and may thus produce the effects of such poisoning.

Features Of The Different Castes Amongst Snakes

The snakes whose skin is lustrous like a pearl or silver,is coloured yellow and looks like gold and emits a sweet smell, should be regarded as belonging to the BrŠhniana species of snakes. Those which arc glossy, extremely irritable in their nature and marked with spots on their skin resembling the discs of the sun and moon, or of the shape of a conch-shell ( Ambuja) or an umbrella, should be regarded as belonging to the Kshatriya species. The snakes of the Vaisya caste are coloured black or red or blackish grey or ash-coloured or pigeon-coloured and are (crooked or hard in their structures) like a Vajra. The snakes which resemble a buffalo or a leopard in colour and lustre or are rough-skinned or are possessed of a colour other than the preceding ones should be considered as belonging to the Sudra class. 7.

The poison of all hooded snakes (Phani) deranges and aggravates the bodily VŠyu, that of the Mandali (circular spotted) species aggravates the Pitta, while that of the RŠjiman (striped; class aggravates the bodily Kapha. The poison of a snake of hybrid (Vaikaranja) origin aggravates the two particular Doshas of the body which its parents would have separately aggravated - a fact which helps us to ascertain the species to which its parents belong. 8.

Particular Habits Of Different Kinds Of Snakes

Now hear me describe the special habits of each of these families of snakes. A snake of the RŠjimŠn species, is found abroad in the fourth or the last quarter of the night, the Mandali snakes are found to be out in the three preceding watches, while the Darvi-kara snakes are found to be abroad (in quest of prey) only in the day time. 9.

A Darvi-kara snake of tender age, a middle-aged RŠjimŠn snake and an old Mandali snake are as fatal as personified death. A snake of extremely tender age, as well as the one roughly handled by a mungoose, or oppressed with water, as well as an extremely old and emaciated one, or one which is extremely frightened or has recently cast off its slough should be considered as mild-venomed. 10-11.