It’s no wonder to see all kind of wacky things washing up on the beach when El Nino rages on.But when it comes to surprises, we have to give El Nino some credit. A rare venomous snake was spotted on a Californian beach by local wildlife enthusiasts.
Recently a group of volunteers from the Huffington Beach Surfrider Foundation have discovered a dead snake on the Bolsa Chica Beach. According to their statements, the dead snake found on the beach is, in fact, a rare sight to behold.
The washed up reptile is a yellow-bellied sea snake, a very rare snake indeed, which was seen on two other occasions. According to the records, the first ever documented encounter with such a snake was in 1972, the second one being this year.
The yellow-bellied water snake, also known as the Pelamis platura, or the pelagic sea snake, is rare species of venomous snake found mainly in tropical areas. According to scientific literature, this species of reptile is endemic to Africa, Asia, Mexico, and Australia.
The Pelamis platura can reach lengths up to 720 mm in the case of males and 880 mm in the case of females. This species has been discovered and described in 1803, by the François Marie Daudin, a french zoologist, the same scientists who between 1799 and 1800 wrote the famous Traité élémentaire et complet d’Ornithologie. This was the first scientifical treaty which was able to combine the Linnean binomial nomenclature ( the system currently used by natural science in which animals receive names comprised of two parts) with Buffon’s approach on anatomical and physiological descriptions.
More on the Pelamis platura. According to certain reports, it would seem that the cold-blooded creeper fancies warm waters. The snake was also found to be oviparous, and concerning their breeding habits, it would seem that the female’s gestational period extends for a period of 6 months.
Also, it would worthy of mentioning the yellow-bellied water snake is highly venomous by nature, although no human casualties were reported after interacting with the snake. The Pelamis platura uses its highly refined venom delivery mechanism during the hunt. Its venom contains a potent neurotoxin which the snake uses in order to immobilize its prey such as certain species of fish.
Although the snake’s venom cannot kill a human, the neurotoxin found inside it can cause muscle damage and myoglobinuria. Also, it has been proven that the yellow-bellied water snake’s bite can be capable of causing neuromuscular paralysis and renal damage.