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  • 06 January, 2023

  • 5 Min Read

A new species of tiny Boa from Ecuador

A new species of tiny Boa from Ecuador

  • In honor of an Indigenous campaigner, researchers have named a new species of dwarf boa that they found in the Amazon of Ecuador.

About Dwarf Boa:

  • The snake, which belonged to the Tropidophiidae family, was up to 20 centimeters long when it was discovered in northern Ecuador's cloud forest.
  • Based on its outward characteristics and bone structure, Tropidophis cacuangoae can be distinguished from other reptiles of the same species.
  • Two confirmed specimens of the species were discovered by the scientists.
  • Similar to a boa constrictor, it is generally light brown in color with darker brown or black markings.
  • The species is thought to be indigenous to Ecuador and is found in the eastern tropical piedmont and lower evergreen montane forests of the Amazon tropical rainforest biome.
  • The species is unique in that it has a "vestigial pelvis," a trait shared by prehistoric snakes.
  • This may be proof that lizards that lost limbs over millions of years gave rise to snakes.
  • Background of naming: Dolores Cacuango, an early 20th-century pioneer in the fight for indigenous and farmers' rights in Ecuador, is honored by the snake's name.

Objectivity of the discovery:

  • T. Cacuangoae's discovery proves that small, elusive vertebrates can exist for protracted stretches of time without being seen and formally described by science.
  • This new species' discovery emphasizes the urgent need to speed up research in remote locations where knowledge gaps persist but which are suspected of harboring significant biodiversity and are gravely threatened by human activities.

Source: Down To Earth


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