The Common House (Wolf) Snake of Asia

The common house snake, also known as the wolf snake (Latin name: Lycodon capucinus), is well named.  It likes to hang out in and around houses.  It is not at all unusual to find them in many areas of Southeast Asia. Even the name “wolf” suits it well because of its jagged, backwards facing fangs.

The home range for these about-2ft [60cm] long snakes ranges from the Maldives and India through Thailand, up to Hong Kong and out onto the Philippine and Indonesian islands.  They’ve even moved onto Christmas Island off the coast of Australia.

English: A wolf snake, Lycophidion capense

wolf snake, Lycophidion capense

One of the most informative pages I ran across on this snake is from a snake rescue group in India. (Those are some really brave people!) They point out that when a call comes in to “get rid” of one of these house snakes, they’ll go out to check, but they don’t remove the snake from the area.  Instead, they teach the locals that if this snake is gone, a cobra or something similar might move in.  They show the people that having a harmless neighbor eating their little pests sure beats a void where dangerous snakes might take over. (It seems like there is a godly principle that teaches us about the dangers of a void…)

In areas where there aren’t nice, older houses with lots of cracks and tight spaces (like behind the electric box) to spend the day hiding, these snakes will climb into trees or hide under or in rocks.  The reason they like people’s houses so much is because their favorite foods live in our homes too.  House snakes will eat the occasional mouse or frog, but their favorite meal is a tasty gecko or skink. They are nocturnal, so their food (except mice) is sleepy when the snake is hungry.

To eat, house snakes will grab hold of their prey and just hang on until it stops struggling.  No painkiller with venom for them, just brute force. Now we get to the interesting part.  I ran into a detailed study of how their mouth works to allow them to do this will hard-skinned lizards (page 4 has a cool photo of the upper jaw).

If these snakes had ordinary jaws like most animals have, they would starve.  Their food would escape sort of like a pencil does when you try to cut it with scissors.  So, how did God help them survive (and keep the lizard population in check)?  He made their jaws and teeth quite different from ours.

Lots of animals have backwards pointing teeth to keep their lunch from squirming away from them.  House snakes have these teeth.  They also have really downward tipped front jaws. This allows them to get a good grip on their meal without it escaping.

Now, how would an ‘evolving’ snake survive during the vast amount of time they claim it takes for animals to develop new features? This is a much smaller change than most, but it gives you the idea.

A snake with just a touch of these special teeth and jaw position would still lose most of its prey and would starve before having a chance to have a baby with a tiny bit better jaw and tooth alignment. If it managed to survive by eating softer things like frogs, why would it care about changing its teeth and jaws in the first place?  There isn’t a logical way to explain how you get from point A to point B in an evolutionary world.  You have to just believe that it happened despite the facts.

That’s why we say that it takes as much, or more, faith to be an evolutionist than to believe in the Creator God designing them this way to start out with.

Lord, all living things depend on you. You give them food at the right time. You give it, and they eat it. They are filled with good food from your open hands. Psalm 104:27,28 Easy-to-read Version

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