The animal kingdom is pretty interesting and every day or the other, crazy and funny videos of these wonderful creatures go viral. Videos and pictures of animals in the wild are quite fascinating to watch, and often go viral on social media. One such extremely rare and deformed snake with two heads has been found in the wild in South Africa.
In what can be termed a bizarre finding, a snake sporting two heads has been discovered by snake rescuers in South Africa’s Ndwedwe region. Although this creature did not cause harm to anyone in its vicinity, its unusual appearance has left netizens surprised.
Apparently, the Durban man who spotted the rare snake in the garden didn’t want anyone to harm it. That’s why he put it in a bottle and asked Evans to take it away.
“It was such a strange sight, seeing this deformed snake. It’s a juvenile, around [a foot] in length. It was quite interesting to see how it moved. Sometimes, the heads would try to go in opposite directions from one another, other times, it would rest one head on the other. That seemed the most effective way of moving,” Evans wrote in the caption.
This condition is called polycephaly, which is generally a rarity when it comes to mammals and is common in certain reptiles. According to reports, one possible cause of this condition is when embryos fail to complete their full division.
Taking to social media, Nick Evans, a South Africa-based snake rescuer, shared images of the two-headed Southern Brown Egg-eater, which is believed to be a harmless species. The snake was discovered by a local, who captured the reptile in a bottle and asked Evans to take it away.
What is Polycephaly?
According to a 2013 paper in the Journal of Comparative Pathology, out of 4087 pit vipers hatched, only three hatched with dual heads. This condition mainly occurs when the embryo doesn’t entirely complete a division. In other words, when two separate embryos fuse together incompletely, a two-headed creature is born.
Notably, wild creatures with polycephaly conditions have a small life span depending on the degree to which the two heads are split. Reports say that when an animal has two heads with two different stomachs, they are more likely to fight over prey and starve than if the snake has just one digestive system.
Evan said that the two-headed snake is now safely in professional care. “There is no point in releasing it.” As far as I am aware, they don’t generally live long. This one wouldn’t last long at all in the wild. It can barely move, and when it does, it does so incredibly slowly. “It’s very easy pickings for a predator.