Snakes use a combination of senses, relying especially on smell, which is the most important snake sense. A snake has a regular nose and analyses smell the way all other animals do. But snakes have a second highly developed smell sense (vomeronasal), which some lizards also have. A snake uses its forked tongue to pick up chemical traces. The tongue is then inserted into pits on the roof of the mouth (called the Jacobson’s organ). It is this organ that analyses the chemicals, and not the tongue, which has no taste or smell buds.
Because snakes are ectothermic, they’re slow and cannot be active for long. So they rely heavily on stealth and surprise. Ambush: The snake will choose a spot where prey are likely to be; next to rocks where lizards sun themselves; at the entrance of caves used by bats-the snake strikes out as the bats fly by; next to ripening fruit which attract birds and mammals. Sometimes, some snakes like python do not appreciate correctly the size of their prey and can get immobile or even die while tackling with too large prey. In 2005, the carcasses of a 13-foot pet escaped tiger python (4,3 m) and a 6-foot (2 m) alligator were found floating in a marsh, the gator’s tail and hind legs protruding from the split-open gut of the python.