They’re the largest snakes on Earth, roaming the Amazon. They’ve eaten goats, deer, and even crocodiles.
So what would happen if an anaconda tried to eat you? Can an anaconda really swallow a human?
How long would you be traveling through the snake’s body? And has something like this happened before?
Green anacondas grow up to 9 m in length (30 ft) and can weigh as much as 225 kg (500 lbs). Believe it or not, in 2014 someone was actually dumb enough to attempt this.
He was wearing a large, bulky suit covered in pig’s blood. The anaconda worked for an hour, wrapping it’s mouth around the head of the suit, but it was ultimately unsucessful in swallowing the human whole.
But if it had been sucessful, how would an anaconda be able to eat a full-sized adult?
So you happen to be wandering in the Amazon rain forest and stumble upon one of these giant anacondas. You might think you’d be a tasty meal to them, as a small meal for an anaconda is about 18kg (40 pounds).
If they were to gobble you up, it would keep them satisfied for weeks! But a meal over 45 kg (100 lbs) – like you – might not be what an anaconda is most interested in.
Due to how massive you are, not to mention being taller and broader than most animals it eats, you would take too long to consume. This would leave the anaconda vulnerable to predators for weeks, if not months until it finishes digesting you.
But let’s say it did want to eat you. What would happen then?
Before an anaconda swallows you, it would kill you first. An anaconda is a constrictor snake, and kills by wrapping its body all around its prey and quickly crushing them to death with over 9,000 pounds of pressure.
It would be a pretty quick end for you, but we know that’s not how this show works. So, let’s assume you survive this, and we get to see the entire process. The anaconda would then widen its jaw to swallow you whole.
You won’t have to worry about it chewing you up into little bits, since it only has fangs used for holding its prey. And luckily, as opposed to other snakes, the anaconda isn’t venomous, so its fangs won’t poison and the paralyze you. But something you will find in the anaconda’s mouth is lots and lots of saliva.
This will be used to moisten you, so it’s easier for the anaconda to slide you down their gullet. You’d then be moving down the snake’s esophagus.
As happens in many other animals, the muscles in the esophagus will push you down the snake’s body. The anaconda also has the ability to move, and bend its ribs to crush you even further, and push you down to its stomach.
And now, you’re in the anaconda’s stomach. Don’t worry, we’re still keeping you alive to make this more fun.
The anaconda’s stomach produces powerful acids and stomach enzymes that will dissolve your skin, and then, eventually, your bones. How fast do these acids work, exactly?
Well, an anaconda once dissolved an alligator’s skin in just three days. So your squishy and fleshy skin it would disappear pretty quickly.
Your body would break down even further as you move through the snake’s small intestine. That’s due to the liver and pancreas secreting even stronger enzymes.
Everything besides your hair and your nails will be digested at this point. And even if you were wearing some magical suit that protected you from the acid and everything else, it would take you a couple of weeks before you were unceremoniously pooped out. So, its likely you’d starve.
Although something like this is incredibly unlikely, just leave anacondas alone. After all, they aren’t interested in eating you in most cases, as you’re just too big.
They’re really just trying to defend themselves. Plus, you’d die pretty much instantly if you tried to mess with one of these things.
Subscribe to What-If on YouTube or follow the show on Facebook Watch.
- “Could I Survive If I Was Eaten By An Anaconda?”. 2016. thenakedscientists.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “This man was eaten by a snake, and lived to tell the tale”. Dowling, Amber. 2019. The Loop. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “How This 23-Foot Python Swallowed A Man Whole”. 2017. nationalgeographic.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “What It’s Like To Be Swallowed Whole By An Anaconda”. Shelton, Jacob. 2019. Ranker. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “Can an anaconda eat a person? Are there any legitimate documented cases of an anaconda eating a person?“. 2019. quora.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “Meet the World’s Biggest Snakes”. Elizabeth Palermo, livescience.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “Green Anaconda | National Geographic”. 2010. nationalgeographic.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “Anaconda Facts”. Jessie Szalay, 2016. livescience.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “Anaconda Facts”. 2019. softschools.com. Accessed December 24 2019.
- “HOW DO ANACONDAS DIGEST?”. Jasey Kelly, 2019. animals.mom.me. Accessed December 24 2019.
Your show is great. Full of knowledge. I have been watching you from a long time. Wish a a good luck mate!
[…] “What If You Were Swallowed By An Anaconda? | What If Show”. 2021. What If Show. […]