'Taxonomy of Toxins' Further Reading & Related Resources


This article from Futurism provides a good overview of the difference between poison, toxins, and venom. Check out the summary at the very bottom for a quick guide:



To accompany its 2013 Power of Poisons exhibit in New York, The American Museum of Natural History compiled a wealth of information and posted it on the Power of Poisons website.  http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/the-power-of-poison The site includes a great section dedicated to educators with activity guides for different grade-levels:



The poet Andre Hicks once said, “the earth is my turf”, and the U.S. military feels the same way. For better or worse, American heavy-hitters are scattered across the globe, tromping through the habitat of different toxic species. To assist medical personnel in the event that troops encounter such species, the Department of Defense has put together a pretty impressive Living Hazards Database that lists (the other) species around the world that can “cause serious injury or death of humans”.



How Venoms Kill: Venom 101 is a short video by The Nature of Science that provides entertaining information about venomous species. A highlight come towards the end of the video when the host shows us the effect of Brown Snake’s hemotoxic venom on his own blood...



In classic TV entertainment fashion, World’s Worst Venom by National Geographic is a bit dramatic and focuses on the deadliest venomous critters. Relative levels of toxicity are notoriously difficult to determine*, but the joy of this exploration is journey, not the (final) destination.


*The median lethal dose (LD50) is one of several measurements that scientists use to understand the toxicity.