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The largest species of snakes found in the Amazon region of South America

Previously, four species of anaconda were known. The green anaconda is the largest and lives in the tropical regions of South America, for example in the Amazon River and in the Orinoco and Essequibo Rivers.

Now researchers have discovered that genetically green anacondas are actually two different species. They studied several snakes belonging to the recently named northern green anaconda (Eunectes akaima) and found that the species diverged from the southern species about ten million years ago.

Today, the genetic difference is 5.5 percent – ​​by comparison, humans differ from chimpanzees by only about 2 percent.

Researchers believe These types of snakes lie in shallow areas and wait for prey. Snakes are known to move at lightning speed, extracting the life from their prey and swallowing them whole.

The size of these magnificent creatures was incredible – the female anaconda we encountered was 6.3 meters long, says Brian Fry of the University of Queensland and one of the authors of the study published in the journal Diversity.

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There are anecdotal reports from the Waorani people about the presence of another anaconda in the area that is more than 7.5 meters long and weighs about 500 kilograms.

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