While leading a team of biologists from the University of Queensland in search of sea snakes, Bryan Fry chances upon discovering a deadly new breed of a venomous snake near the town of Weipa in extreme northern Queensland.
It is a never-seen-before species and is known as ‘bandy bandy’.
It is a type of burrowing snake and is genetically and visually different from the ones that are found on the eastern coast and some interior parts of the country.
It is a ‘hoop snake’ that is subterranean and nocturnal in nature and hides below stumps, logs, and rocks.It is characterized by its typical black and white rings and its venom is as toxic as the red-bellied black snake.
It must be saved and conserved – A run-in with ‘bandy bandy’ can inadvertently prove fatal and its typical bite symptoms include swelling at the wound site, numbness, and tingling of the joints and enough localized pain.
Researchers have named the new species as Vermicella parscauda, and they have been able to discover at least five specimens of this species, but then enough conservatory efforts are needed to make them comfortable.
This is also due to the reason that there is much mining activity that happens on the west coast of Cape York Peninsula that can be endangering their lives.
They can be a source of medication in future – The area is infamous for ‘bauxite’ mining, that is the main source of aluminum and therefore, conserving the new-found species can be a definite challenge in hand.
It is also important to mention here that the venom of the snake may be a source of rich proteins that can open up an array of medicinal possibilities and may help to cure many unknown ailments. But all this will only be possible if they are properly saved and conserved and it is important to ensure that they are properly taken care of.
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