New Delhi (Sputnik): Ever since the pandemic scare pushed humans into the confinement of their houses, nature has been dazzling in all of its glory. Flamingoes, cloud cuckoos and dolphins have already been spotted again in India, and now a rather special reptile has joined them.
After being considered “extinct”, a long lost serpent species called the “Assam Keelback” has reappeared in north eastern India’s world famous tea-land Assam after an absence of 129 years.
Researchers from the Wildlife Institute of India confirmed the rediscovery of this non-venomous snake species, photos of which have gone viral on social media.
Lost and found: Snake species endemic to Assam rediscovered after 129 yearshttps://t.co/ze55StnlPc
The species ‘Hebius pealii’, called Assam Keelback, was first seen in 1891 when a British tea-planter Samuel Edward Peal collected two male specimens from Sibsagar district in As… pic.twitter.com/5RQ2IFoJoA
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( #Assam #keelbacksnake registers presence after more than a century )
The Arunachal Times – https://t.co/UGz6qz9Dj7 pic.twitter.com/KILEevMQmn
— The Arunachal Times (@arunachaltimes_) June 28, 2020
Two male snakes from the species were last seen in the Sibsagar district of Assam back in 1891. One of them was sent to Kolkata’s Zoological Survey of India while the other made its way to London’s Natural History Museum.
Upon discovering the adult female Assam Keelback again, researchers turned to the specimen saved in London to get confirmation.
Wildlife scientists performed DNA profiling to establish that the snake found in the Poba Forest Reserve is indeed an Assam Keelback.
The lost and found serpent measures between 50-60 centimeters in length.