An incredible discovery has been made in the least likely place. In a sinkhole in Tennessee, a 5 million year old fossil of a winged snake has been found. The precious ancient skeleton was uncovered along with a number of other snake remains. This find means a new species, – Zilantophis and it is believed they could be closely related to rat snakes (Pantherophis) and kingsnakes (Lampropeltis). Although this small (around the size of a human pointer finger) snake had these wings, it is not believed they could fly.
If you are curious about seeing the fossils for yourself, you can visit the dig site in Tennessee. The discoveries found there are estimated to be 7 million to 4.5 million years old. Remains of frogs, turtles, ancient rhinoceros and even a red panda are just some of the fossils located here. You can also visit the museum that holds the fascinating 14,000 fossils discovered at the site. There is even a lab you can see into, while the fossils are being examined. Perfect for the ancient bones-obsessed child or adult.
Snakes And Folklore
Weirdly, in Genesis of the Old Testament, there is a part where God is handing out punishments to Adam, Eve, and the Serpent for their roles in the ‘naughty’ eating of the forbidden fruit. Adam is forced to work the land, Eve is told she will have bad child-bearing pains, while the serpent is told that as a punishment, from then on, snakes will go on their belly. Ricky Gervais even does a stand up about this, as it is as if the snake got off totally free, because they already went on their bellies. Although this discovery is not believed to have quite flown, it certainly opens up the possibilities of quite a different looking snake to the ones we see today.
Watch Ricky Gervais poking fun of Genesis:
Featured image via YouTube.