Featured Creature Friday: The Plummeting Paradise Tree Snake

You guys. You guys, this is a snake. You guys, this is a snake THAT FLIES.

All my nightmares are coming to life.

I’ve always wondered exactly how skills like this develop in nature. I mean, I understand natural selection and adaptive evolution and all of that, but to me this looks like the sort of skill set that could only have come from a long line of severely depressed snakes. They were trying to end it all when they discovered that actually they can be kind of wing-shaped. Maybe they discovered a new purpose in life as accidental pilots and stuck around long enough to breed whole new generations of ridiculous flying snakes.

Or maybe they were just minding their own business, flying the old fashioned way on an airliner — perhaps on their way to a vacation destination far from their native southeast Asia — when Samuel L. Jackson started exterminating all of their friends, and they had to risk jumping just to survive the slaughter. (Now they’re just trying to get over the post-traumatic stress and are planning to bring a court case.)

Their gliding abilities are said to rival those of flying squirrels, and if you ask me they do the job with more style, too. And they come in some pretty swell colors, as you can see here. In addition to flying, they also have available to them a venom that’s powerful enough to paralyze the small lizards and mammals that they prey on but not really powerful enough to hurt humans badly, so at least we don’t have to worry about like… flying acid attacks or anything. They’re also pretty freaking cute. Just look at those adorable little nose-holes! Awww!

Paradise Tree Snake closeup

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One thought on “Featured Creature Friday: The Plummeting Paradise Tree Snake

  1. 300 feet??? Holy smackers!!!

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