Snakes

Participants of the 2022 Florida Python Challenge captured a total of 231 invasive pythons during the ten-day competition. 

Florida Teen Wins $10,000 for Hunting Invasive Pythons

The annual Florida Python Challenge combats the destructive snakes, which have taken over the Everglades

The female python weighed 215 pounds and measured 18 feet long.

Florida Biologists Capture Record-Breaking 215-Pound Python

Invasive Burmese pythons are wreaking havoc on native wildlife and ecosystems in the Everglades

The new gel uses a protein called ecarin from the venom of the saw-scaled viper and the protein textilinin from the eastern brown snake’s venom to seal wounds. (Pictured: An eastern brown snake)

Innovation for Good

Made From Snake Venom, These Hydrogels Could Treat Uncontrolled Bleeding

Scientists have found that two proteins repurposed from snake venom can initiate blood clotting in under 60 seconds

The behavior has not previously been seen, and it was the first time an interaction between a Bolivian river dolphin and a Beni anaconda has ever been recorded.

River Dolphins Spotted in Rare Playful Interaction With a Beni Anaconda

Researchers suspect that the dolphins were playing with the boa, but many questions about the behavior remain

Boas constrict their prey to death.

How Boa Constrictors Breathe While Squeezing the Life Out of Their Prey

Researchers outfitted the snakes with electrodes and scanned them using X-rays to see how the flexing predators managed to take in air

A greater horseshoe bat can use echolocation to target an insect meal.

Five Amazing Adaptations That Help Animals Thrive in the Dark

From snakes that use infrared radiation to find prey to deep sea fishes that communicate via bioluminescence, these creatures flourish without light

The team used morphological data and DNA testing on a male and female (pictured) specimen to describe it. 

 

A New Himalayan Snake Species Was Discovered in an Instagram Post

When Virendar Bhardwaj uploaded a photo of a snake at his home in Chamba, India, scientists realized it has yet to be described by science

The Hispaniolan boa appeared smaller than any other boa the researchers had seen before.

For the First Time in 133 Years, a New Species of Boa Was Discovered in the Dominican Republic

The small snake may be one of the smallest boas in the world

A new study of western diamondback rattlesnakes reveals that they abruptly shift to a high-frequency rattle as danger approaches.

Rattlesnakes Fool Humans Into Thinking They're Nearby With This Sound-Warping Trick

A new study reveals the snakes change the speed of their rattles to appear closer than they are

Olive sea snakes are among the largest marine snake species and sometimes make contact with divers.

Venomous Sea Snakes That Charge Divers May Just Be Looking for Love

A new study suggests apparent attacks are actually fleeting cases of mistaken identity

A juvenile scarlet snake stuck in the web of a brown widow spider in Georgia.

New Research

In a Spider vs. Snake Battle, These 40 Arachnids Would Defeat and Devour Their Serpentine Foes

At least 40 arachnid species kill and eat certain slithering predators, which can be up to 30 times the eight-legged critters' size

A Libo leopard gecko (Goniurosaurus liboensis). After this species of cave gecko was first described in 2013, it quickly appeared online for sale.

Reptile Traffickers Often Target Newly Described Species

Traders trawl recently published scientific papers to get the names and locations of animals to sell to collectors

Pope’s pit viper, a venomous species that lives across Southeast Asia. Someone who is allergic to one type of snake is likely allergic to many types because their venoms have a similar composition.

What Happens When Scientists Become Allergic to Their Research

Researchers spend long periods of time around the organisms they study, and sometimes that exposure has unintended effects

Sidewinder snakes most likely phased out the spikes along their bellies in favor of a smoother belly that can move with no frictional drag.

Snakeskin Reveals Secrets Behind a Sidewinder's Twisted Wiggle

Serpent bellies seem smooth, but on a microscopic level, their species-specific scale structures may show how they adapted to their environments

The brown tree snake slithers through vegetation.

Invasive Brown Tree Snakes Stun Scientists With Amazing New Climbing Tactic

The successful predator, which has decimated bird populations on Guam, lassoes its body around poles in order to propel itself upwards

A newly described python species named Messelopython freyi. The 47-million-year-old specimen is the world’s oldest known fossil record of a python.

New Research

Oldest-Ever Python Fossil Found in Europe

The 47-million-year-old snake pushes the evolutionary origins of the group back some 20 million years

Scientists estimate that the snakes are responsible for decimating 90 to 99 percent of the small mammal population, and they're also known to strangle deer, alligators and birds.

Could Invasive Burmese Pythons Soon Be on the Menu in Florida?

The pythons have devastated the Everglades, and eating them could help control their growing population

One specimen of the ultra-black fish species Anoplogaster cornuta.

Innovation for Good

Ten Scientific Discoveries From 2020 That May Lead to New Inventions

From soaring snakes to surfing suckerfish, nature is an endless source of inspiration

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Smithsonian Voices

Rare Iridescent Snake Discovered in Vietnam

The discovery could help scientists piece together new information about snake evolution.

Two-headed snakes struggle more when their heads are joined close together.

In Florida, Pet Cat Brings Home a Rare Two-Headed Snake

The snake is now in the care of Florida Wildlife Conservation's Fish and Wildlife Research Institute

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