Difference Between Venom And Poison

Most of the people are not aware of the differences between venom and poison. But they are not the same thing. They both are toxic substances but are delivered to the victims in different ways. They are biologically produced chemicals that affect the normal functioning of an organism.

Poison enters the body by swallowing, inhaling, or absorption through the skin. Venom is injected through bite or sting. Basically, if a person bites an organism and dies, the organism is poisonous. However, if an organism bites a person and he dies, the organism is venomous. Let us have a look at the remarkable differences between venom and poison exhibited by various animals.
Also read: Reptilia

Difference Between Venom And Poison
Venom Poison
Enters the body through bites and sting. Enters into the body by swallowing, inhaling, or absorption through the skin.
It is secreted by the fangs, teeth, or spiny protrusions on the body. It is secreted by the skin.
It is introduced in an organism through a bite or a sting. It is secreted as a result of being touched, disturbed, or eaten.
Venom is used primarily to kill or stun prey. Poison is secreted to deter a potential predator
The black mamba is an example of a venomous animal. Dart frog is an example of a poisonous animal.

Venomous and Poisonous Animals

Venomous Animals

  • Most snakes and almost all spiders are venomous.
  • Some lizards are also considered venomous. The venom of the lizards can be mild or strong. The venom in Gila monster and Iguana is relatively mild compared to the mixture of toxins and bacteria injected by Komodo dragon.
  • Bees, ants, and wasps do not contain fangs but are considered venomous.
  • The male platypus has a fang-like structure on the inner side of each ankle attached to a venom gland.
  • Jellyfish has nematocytes which contain toxins to drive away predators or stun prey.
  • King cobra is the longest venomous snake in the world and it injects venom powerful enough to kill animals as large as an elephant.

However, not all snakes inject their venom while biting. 20% of the bites by the snakes are dry bites.

Poisonous Animals

  • The amphibians such as frogs, toads, and salamanders are animals that contain poison. Dart frogs are the most poisonous frogs in the world. Their skin contains toxins designed to deter predators.
  • The liver, kidney, and spikes of a puffer fish contain nerve toxins harmful to humans.
  • Sometimes, poisons such as hydrogen sulphide can be used in research, such as inducing suspended animation-like states in mice for various tests.

Also read: Suspended Animation
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