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Rare Two-Headed  Wolf Snake Baffles Wildlife Experts

An extremely rare two-headed snake has confused animal experts after it was found by a wildlife enthusiast in an eastern India forest. The creature was a newly born, non- venomous specie and has been identified as a Wolf Snake. A video clip was shared online on twitter from an Indian Forest Services officer named Susanta Nandashows, the non-venomous snake struggling to explore its way across the floor under the control of two fully formed independent heads.

India is hub different venomous and nonvenomous creatures including snakes and they frequently adventure into zones occupied by people. The snake was discovered in the Dhenkikot forest range of Keonjhar wildlife asylum in Odisha State by Rakesh Mohalick. The wolf snake is a special type of non-venomous snake which lives in South Asian and Southeast Asian forests and takes after the venomous basic krait.

Specialists examining the snake say that it is 14cm long and has two fully formed heads, two gleaming tongues, and four working eyes, but only one body. Both its heads work independently of each other, which means they were spotted fighting for food.  It becomes a survival challenge for such animals in the wild.

Mr. Nanda wrote while sharing the video footage featuring this snake that a rare wolf snake with two fully formed heads was rescued from a house in the Dehnkikote Forrest range of Keonjhar district in Odisha. He added that the rare two-headed snake was later released into the forest. The video footage showing this two-headed snake has produced huge intrigue on social media.  More than 15,000 people have viewed it on Twitter and invited several inquisitive responses and stunned reactions.

The photographer Rakesh Mohalick said that one of these two heads looks moderately developed but both these heads know how to respond to a potential food source. Mr. Mohalick discovered the snake and he explains that two completely functions heads independent of each other is not a benefit but indeed a problem for the poor reptile as it initiates a competition for food between his two heads.

The existence of such two-headed snakes is rare, is not common. But last year, a similar case of a snake with two obvious and fully functional heads was reported in the United States. This dual head snake was called  “Double Dave” and this name was given by the locals who first reported it.

The phenomenon of reptiles having more than one head is known as Polycephaly. In most of the cases, polycephalic snakes do not live long. Wolf snakes are non-venomous and are found in Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan apart from India. It is a nocturnal animal and is mostly inactive during the day, but highly active as the night falls.  As it is non-venomous, it could try to defend itself every time it feels threatened. It eats frogs and lizards. It has sharp visible fangs that typically result in deep lacerations.

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The condition, dicephaly that causes a snake to be born with two heads, is already very rare. Two-headed snakes are born because of numerous reasons such as incomplete division of embryo, a fusion of two undeveloped embryos, ecological variables, temperature, and numerous other reasons. The confusion happens in only one out of each 100,000 snakes in the wild, and in one out of 10,000 snakes born in captivity.

Keen wildlife enthusiast and photographer Rakesh, who researches various species and identified the Wolf snake, said that this means the animal ends up competing with itself. He added that one of the two heads is slightly more developed and both are known to fight over food.

Two-headed creatures are considered in many cultures to be a bad omen, the portent of disaster, and they have frequently appeared in mythology. But although the two-headed snake is uncommon, they do exist in around one in 100,000 live births in the wild. After being identified, the rare snake was later released back into the wild.



Amna Rana

Amna Rana, a writing enthusiast and a microbiologist. Her areas of interest are medical and health care. She writes about diseases, treatments, alternative therapies, lifestyles and the latest news. You can find her on Linkedin Amna Rana.

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