New snake species announced

January 9, 2012
In this photo taken Wednesday, March 30, 2011 and released by The Wildlife Conservation Society on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2012, a Matilda's Horned Viper is photographed in a forest habitat in southwestern Tanzania. The world's newest snake was discovered in a small patch of southwest Tanzania about two years ago and was introduced last month in an issue of Zootaxa as the world's newest known snake species - named after the 7-year-old daughter of Tim Davenport, director of the Wildlife Conservation Society in Tanzania, who was on the three-person team that discovered the viper. (AP Photo/Wildlife Conservation Society, Tim Davenport) EDITORIAL USE ONLY, NO SALES

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) announced the discovery of a spectacularly colored snake from a remote area of Tanzania in East Africa.

The striking black-and-yellow snake is called Matilda's horned viper. It measures 2.1 feet (60 centimeters) and has horn-like scales above its eyes.

The discovery is described in the December issue of Zootaxa. Authors of the study include: Michele Menegon of Museo delle Scienze of Trento, Italy; Tim Davenport of the ; and Kim Howell of the University of Dar es Salaam.

The authors are keeping the exact location of the new species a secret, since the snake could be of interest to the illegal pet collectors. Its habitat, estimated at only a few square miles is already severely degraded from logging and manufacture. The authors expect the species will be classified as critically endangered and have already established a small captive breeding colony.

The snake is named after the daughter of co-author Tim Davenport, Director of WCS's Tanzania Program.

Explore further: Battle over a garter snake in Wisconsin

More information: For more information about the snake, go to: http://www.atherismatildae.org/

Related Stories

Battle over a garter snake in Wisconsin

July 29, 2006

Wisconsin lawmakers are threatening to remove a snake's protected status unless the state Department of Natural Resources eases regulations on developers.

Africa's least-known carnivore in Tanzania

December 21, 2006

[B]Mongoose is one more rare find in the mountains of Southern Tanzania[/B] The Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) announced today that a camera-trap study in the mountains of Southern Tanzania has now recorded ...

Rare mongoose found in Tanzania

December 22, 2006

The Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) announced today that a camera-trap study in the mountains of Southern Tanzania has now recorded Africa’s least-known and probably rarest carnivore: Jackson’s mongoose, ...

Asian waterbirds stage remarkable comeback

April 3, 2008

According to a report released today by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), several species of rare waterbirds from Cambodia’s famed Tonle Sap region have staged remarkable comebacks, thanks to a project involving ...

'Super reefs' fend off climate change, study says

April 23, 2009

The Wildlife Conservation Society announced today a study showing that some coral reefs off East Africa are unusually resilient to climate change due to improved fisheries management and a combination of geophysical factors. ...

Recommended for you

Researchers design first artificial ribosome

July 29, 2015

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University have engineered a tethered ribosome that works nearly as well as the authentic cellular component, or organelle, that produces all the proteins ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Callippo
not rated yet Jan 12, 2012
Atheris matildae is actually a newly recognized subspecies of Atheris ceratophora - well known as a low-land form of eyelash bush viper between herpetologists and amateur terrarists.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.