What Is the Difference Between Venomous and Poisonous?

by Debbie Hadley, ThoughtCo

The terms “venomous” and “poisonous” are adjectives applied to various animals that are often used interchangeably, but the words have different meanings in biology. Both refer to the presence of toxic substances and their dangers to humans and other creatures. However, venoms are delivered actively and poisons are delivered passively.

Venomous Organisms 

A venom is a secretion that an animal produces in a gland for the purpose of injecting into another animal. It is actively introduced into a victim by means of a specialized apparatus. Venomous organisms use a wide variety of tools to inject venom: barbs, beaks, fangs or modified teeth, harpoons, nematocysts (found in jellyfish tentacles), pincers, proboscises, spines, sprays, spurs, and stingers.

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Biography
Carol graduated from Riverside White Cross School of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Literature. She attended the University of Toledo, College of Nursing, and received a Master’s of Nursing Science Degree as an Educator.

She has traveled extensively, is a photographer, and writes on medical issues. Carol has three children RJ, Katherine, and Stephen – one daughter-in-law; Katie – two granddaughters; Isabella Marianna and Zoe Olivia – and one grandson, Alexander Paul. She also shares her life with husband Gordon Duff, many cats, and two rescue pups.

Carol’s Archives 2009-2013
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