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Herps In The News Local or national articles where reptiles or amphibians have made it into the news media. Please cite sources.

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Old 05-01-2019, 10:49 PM   #1
Mutant Three-Eyed Python Found in Australia

Too bad it passed away after they found it.

‘Mutant’ Three-Eyed Python Found in Australia

By Stephanie Valera 05.01.2019 :: 4:41PM EDT

The three-eyed python, named Monty by park rangers,
was discovered in the Australian outback in March.
(Photo Credit: Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife / Facebook)

Park rangers were recently left baffled after they found a bizarre, three-eyed python in the Australian Outback.

An X-ray revealed that the juvenile snake, which was 3 months old and measured around 15 inches, did not have two separate heads that were forged together, rather it appeared to have one skull with an additional eye socket and three functioning eyes.

Rangers from the Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife found the unusual snake — a carpet python — in March on the side of a highway, just outside Darwin, Australia. They named the python “Monty”.

The rangers said on Facebook that the eye “likely developed very early during the embryonic stage of development.” They also said it was “extremely unlikely” that the development of the extra eye was due to environmental factors as natural-occurring as malformations are “relatively common” in reptiles.

“The three-eyed snake warns The Dry is coming,” rangers posted on Facebook, a reference to the hit show Game of Thrones‘ Three-Eyed Raven.

Caring for Monty proved to be a challenge for the Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife officials, however, and the snake struggled to feed due to his deformities.

Ranger Ray Chatto confirmed to NT News that the snake died last week: “‘It’s remarkable it was able to survive so long in the wild with its deformity and he was struggling to feed before he died last week,” he said.

Monty’s remains are now being kept at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) research center in Darwin, the Daily Mail reported.

Carpet pythons are non-venomous and can be found in habitats ranging from tropical rainforest in the north-east of Australia to arid and coastal regions, according to the Australia Zoo. They can grow up to 11 feet and primarily eat mammals and birds, although smaller pythons prefer to eat lizards.

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