El Niño brings yellow-bellied sea snakes on South California beaches.
While the Americans wait for what may be the biggest El Niño event, which will bring heavy rains and inundations, a guest has already appeared due to warm waters: the poisonous sea snake.
Several days ago, the newspapers’ headlines would warn about the coral bleaching caused by the El Niño phenomenon. However, scientists seem to have omitted another danger of El Niño: the poisonous sea snakes.
For the first time in the last 30 years, a yellow-bellied sea snake showed up on Oxnard Beach. This species has very toxic a venom and descends from Asian cobras.
Dana Murray, a marine scientist, thinks that this is a strange event. She added that this kind of snake appears only together with the warming water.
Moreover, a scuba diver stated that he spends a lot of time under water, but he has never seen a snake.
According to herpetologists, this kind of snake spends most of its time swimming in warm waters a few miles away from shore. It is one of the most widespread snakes in the world, which can be found in Indian and Pacific Oceans, Africa, Asia, Australia. In some areas such as the Pacific, this snake can grow up to 2 feet.
What scientists noted about these snakes is the fact that they have an extremely small mouth.
Scientists advise people to report the snakes’ sightings to lifeguards.
“They’re highly venomous but at the same time, they’re not very aggressive to humans. Don’t get too close. Take pictures. Note their location. And report it,” Murray stated.
With the soon-to-come warming waters, scientists expect even more creatures to appear on shore.
Image Source: Wikimedia