Extremely Rare Fishing Snakes Discovered
The little-seen reptiles, native to Andean cloud forests, are still mostly a mystery, scientists say.
Deep in the remote tropical forests of the northern Andes, scientists have discovered three new species of extremely rare snake.
The discovery comes mere weeks after a separate team announced the discovery of a closely related snake in southwestern Ecuador. Taken together, the four newfound reptiles double the number of known fishing snakes of the genus Synophis—an elusive group native to South America known for their dark backs and light bellies.
Despite their name, scientists know next to nothing about how Synophis snakes feed and spend their time. (Also see "New Venomous Snake Found: Death Adder Hiding in Plain Sight.")
“I have no idea where [the name “fishing snake”] comes from—they don’t fish at all,” says biologist Omar Torres-Carvajal