Hot answers tagged

124

As noted in the comments, the Wikipedia article you cited contains a description of a Mythbusters episode in which Adam Savage allowed himself to be bitten by a daddy-long-legs. He experienced a "mild, short-lived burning sensation." From this we can conclude that pholcidae can bite humans, but their venom is not toxic to us. While the venom of pholcidae ...


23

Solenoglyphy is not the only envenomation mechanism that snakes can use there are also opisthoglyphous and proteroglyphous snakes, I would suggest that either of these mechanisms would be more suitable for a fox that has to tear and crew its meat. In particular opisthoglyphous teeth are almost unaltered in their morphology except for surface groves that ...


12

Turning to stone and going back is not possible, as it requires changing the atoms making up the body of the victim. A similar result can be however be achieved if the injected toxin create a state similar to rigor mortis: all the muscles (well, only the voluntary muscles in this case) becomes rigid, so that the victim is alive but paralyzed like it was ...


10

Some animals naturally secrete a substance called bufotenin/bufotenine: Bufotenin (5-HO-DMT, N,N-dimethyltryptamine, bufotenine) is a tryptamine related to the neurotransmitter serotonin. It is an alkaloid found in the skin of some species of toads; in mushrooms, higher plants, and mammals. (...) In 2001, ethnobotanist Jonathan Ott published the results of ...


9

There are a few mammals alive today with venemous saliva. The solenodon is similar to a large shrew, and has grooves on specialized teeth that conduct the saliva into a bite. Apparently this produces anti-social behavior in the solenodon, such that if they are housed together there is a tendency for them to bite each other. It is not too much of a stretch ...


7

I give you the Male Platypus A quick Google search reveals that the male platypus has poison glands on their thighs and a hollow spur near their heels. The platypus is not a bird, but it's a strange little honker and has, genetically speaking, a lot in common with birds. The male platypus might be the only critter on the planet with venomous claws that has ...


7

Yes, it would be possible. There don't seem to be any bird which produces venom themselves but there could in your world, there are many types of poisonous. A slight variant could be that the claws aren't venomous per se, but those birds would also be attacking other (venomous) animals/plants, and their claws keep traces of their venom (or at least they do ...


6

I'd like to preface this with an acknowledgement that L. Dutch's answer is absolutely more practical. Half the reason I'm answering this is for the cringe factor. Why not bone? Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva is a very rare genetic condition in which your connective tissue regrows as bone. Completely irreversible and untreatable ("surgery often ...


5

Toxicity in birds is certainly possible. Cool poisonous bird Pitohuis use batrachotoxin, the same neurotoxin as several poison dart frogs. They get it from Choresine beetles, and then sequester the toxin in their skin, as well as excreting it to cover the feathers. Your bird would necessarily need some other means of processing the toxins so that they were ...


4

While the question may suggest that it's looking for an answer involving the spider's venom, there is no such specification directly asked for. As such I challenge that a spider need only be large enough to choke on to cause death. Perhaps these spiders of yours are prone to hunting slugs that like to dwell in shallow caves and confuse the human tongue ...


3

A venom is a nonliving toxin produced by an organism for use as a poison. Foxes do not have that. But a fox can definitely poison a thing with its bite. Foxes can transmit rabies. If you want to wipe out a carnivore species rabies works great. African wild dogs have been driven to near extinction by rabies. They are social and so it is easy for a dog to ...


2

A literal turning to stone (or bone), strictly following your well-worded question, without magic would not be possible. In humans, muscular activity produces a byproduct called "lactic acid". The lactic acid is usually carried away at a rate which is in accordance with your level of physical fitness. When it isn't, after sessions of temporarily increased ...


1

As their venom would be useless against humans, the only ways such a creature could harm us would be if they were large enough that they could either crush a human being or their mandibles were large enough they can kill through the sheer force of their bite. Each would require the spider to have a body at least the size of a human's, probably much larger. ...


1

Daddy Longlegs Spiders, officially "Pholcidae" are known to be the worlds most venomous spiders, sort of. We are supposedly unaffected by them because their fangs are too small, the shape of their fangs, or their venom doesn't affect us due to size. According to the very same WP page you linked in the question, in fact the two paragraphs around ...


1

You decide, but basically, yes. You're creating a new race here with entirely new physiologies. What you're describing doesn't break the laws of physics, so yeah, sure, go for it. As o.m. has pointed out we already do something similar with allergic reactions in humans, though that tends to be with much less violent allergens and doesn't really have an ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible