Recently scientists announced that they discovered a new species of snake that is native to Australia. And here’s a shocker: the snake is a killer.
With the warm and fuzzy name of Kimberley Death Adder, the newly discovered species is considered to be one of the most venomous snakes in the world. It lies in wait, camouflaged to blend in with its surroundings, until an unwary victim stumbles into its area, and then it strikes and bites with its deadly fangs. Before an antivenom was developed and made available, it killed or paralyzed about half of its human victims.
It’s no surprise, really, that the Kimberley Death Adder is one of the most dangerous snakes in the world. In Australia, it’s par for the course. Even though many Americans associate Australia with beer and charming accents, the world’s only country-continent is home to an extraordinary assortment of deadly creatures, ranging from man-eating Great White Sharks to killer crocodiles to venomous, paralyzing snails to huge birds with killer claws that can rip off an arm to loads of poisonous fish, jellyfish, and octopus species. Even certain species of purportedly cuddly koalas can be deadly. And, of course, Australia is well-represented on the top 10 deadly snake and top 10 venomous spider lists. There’s a reason Crocodile Dundee carried around that huge knife.
Even though I’d probably be scared snotless the entire time I was there and would need to keep an eye out at all time for spiders, snakes, and dozens of other potential killers, I’d still like to visit Australia one day: it just seems like the right thing to do. I’ve wanted to check it out since Kish and I read In A Sunburned Country, Bill Bryson’s classic and hilarious book about his travels in Australia. Now there’s just one more creature waiting to knock me off when I finally make the long flight to the other side of the world.