Life History
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DOMAIN - Eukarya

Domain is the broadest classification of an organism.  Domain Eukarya is divided into four kingdoms, Protista, Animalia, Plantae and Fungi. Eukarya is characterized by having complex cells,  membrane bound organelles, and the genetic material is located inside the nucleus.

KINGDOM - Animalia

Members of the kingdom Animalia lack a cell wall that is found in plants and are heterotrophic feeders. Their food is ingested/digested within an internal cavity and their bodies are made up of millions of cells organized into tissues which are then organized into organs that serve for a specific purpose to the organism.

PHYLUM - Chordata

Chordates have a structure known as a notochord, which is a rod that extends the entire length of chordates fully developed bodies helping support the organism during locomotion. They have bilateral symmetry, a segmented body, 3 germ-layers (with a well developed coelom), a complete digestive system, a closed circulatory system with ventral heart, a hollow nerve chord and a bony or cartilaginous skeletal system.

SUBPHYLUM - Vertebrata

All vertebrata share a vertebral column that runs from head to tail forming the main skeletal axis of the body. It takes the role of the notochord and acts to strengthen it for locomotion. Their muscles are attached to bone, a developed digestive system is present with 2 kidneys to get rid of wastes. They have a 2-4 chambered heart that pumps blood containing hemoglobin, red/white blood cells and many other blood elements. There are usually two sexes to produce offspring.

 CLASS - Reptilia

A major characteristic of all reptiles is that there eggs are protected by an extra membrane. They have have lungs instead of gills and a 3 or 4 chambered heart. They also have acquired epidermal scales.


ORDER - Squamata

Squamata are the largest order of reptiles and includes lizards and snakes. They are distinguished by there scaly skins and a movable quadrate bone.


SUBORDER - Serpentes

Members of the suborder serpentine do not have legs but instead long cylindrical shaped bodies. They are carnivores and several have evolved fangs that inject lethal toxic venom that kills prey or aids in digestion.


FAMILY - Viperidae

Have relatively long hollow fangs that inject venom into prey/predators. When members of viperidae strike, their fangs swing forward to puncture the target and allow envenomation. They have slit shaped pupils, keeled scales and a heat seeking pit that is located between the nose and they eye. They are typically active at night and are ambush predators and all species are proglyphodont.


GENUS - Agkistrodon

Has 9 large scutes on the crown with keeled dorsal scales that are in rows of 19-25. Their snout is flat and upturned with a cross banded pattern. They are viviparous and don't have a fully defined M. pterygodeus glandulae; only has weak connective tissue lined between the venom gland and the unmodified pterygoideus.


SPECIES - piscivorus

Located in the south-central part of the united states. The top and sides of snout are generally light brown with no pattern of lines or stripes. The general coloration is relatively light with its cross band in strong contrast with the ground color.