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What is the Feared Four-legged Snake in Papua? page all

KOMPAS.com Snakes are a group of legless reptiles that move by crawling using their stomachs.

Snakes also have the ability to climb tree trunks and move around tree branches or branches by wrapping themselves around their bodies.

However, this is different from the opinion of some people in Papua who say there are four-legged snakes that live on the Earth of Cendrawasih.

The snake is believed by the local community to have a really deadly venom so its existence is so feared.

So, is it true that there are four-legged snakes in Papua that are very dangerous? Check the facts below.

The four-legged snake referred to by the Papuan people is actually not a real snake as we know it.

The four-legged snake from Papua that has been feared so far is actually the Panana lizard or Tiliqua gigas evanescens.

The lizard species is also named blue tongue lizardblue-tongued lizard, aka blue-tongued bengkarung.

Nah, This one animal is from the genus Tiliqua which is a group of bengkarung with a characteristic fat body.

Panana lizards can be recognized from the shape of the head, scales, and motifs on the body that resembles a snake.

Not only that, the panana lizard has a brown-black color with white stripes on its body. White color can also be found on the tail.

Meanwhile, the main recognizable feature of the panana lizard is its blue tongue.

The tongue of this species of lizard can stick out like a snake – so the Papuan people consider it a real snake.

The color on the tongue is what makes the Panana lizard dubbed the blue tongue lizard.

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Also read: 10 Types of Venomous Snakes in Indonesia

Classification

When viewed from the classification, Panana lizards include:

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Kelas: Reptilia
  • Order: Squamous
  • Family: Scincidae.

The cause of the Panana Lizard is feared

death adder snake illustration

So far, stories have been circulating that the Papuan four-legged snake – which is none other than the Panana lizard – is a venomous animal.

People who are bitten by the animal are said to be dead within minutes. Why did this story appear?

One theory is that the animal that bites a person to death is actually not a panana lizard, but a very venomous snake: the Papuan taipan.

Taipan is a snake that is known to be very deadly and lives in Papua, Australia and the surrounding area.

The shape of the head and scales of this snake looks like a panana lizard, although its tongue is not blue.

Another assumption is that people mistakenly see the death adder – another venomous Papuan snake – as a panana lizard.

The death adder can inject about 40-100 milligrams (mg) of nerve venom, and its bite can cause paralysis and death in as little as 6 hours resulting in respiratory failure.

Due to the similar head shape of the panana lizard, both the tycoon and the death adder are often mistaken for the “four-legged snake”.

Maybe that’s what gave rise to assumptions and stories about Papua’s deadly four-legged snake.

Also read: 10 Largest Snake Species in the World, Who is the Champion?

Habitat

Although referred to as a four-legged snake, the fact is that the Panana lizard is closely related to the blue-tongued lizard from the East.

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This reptile has a distribution area in Australia, Papua New Guinea, Tasmania, including Papua.

For its habitat, panana lizards can live in rivers, forests, swamps, and grasslands.

This species of lizard also likes habitats with water that is still kept clean or has not been polluted.

Breeding

Panana lizards are oviviparous reptiles whose males and females have mating season in December-April.

This species of lizard takes 3-5 months to conceive. And, can give birth to 5-14 babies at once.

Nah, When a baby Panana lizard is born, it can reach 13 centimeters in length. Interestingly, baby panana lizards are born independent.

When the panana lizard is an adult, its body length can reach 40-60 centimeters.

Currently panana lizards are often bred to be sold as pets.

Unlike snakes that prey on other animals, such as birds, lizards, livestock, including fellow snakes, the panana lizard is an omnivorous animal.

That is, the panana lizard is an all-around eater that usually eats the leftover meat of other animals, snails, and insects.

It is possible that this species of lizard also eats the fruit found falling from the tree.

Habit

The panana lizard has the ability to stick out its blue tongue. This is usually done to scare the opponent.

The blue color on the panana’s tongue can make its opponents, including humans, afraid because it is thought to be venomous. In fact, the panana lizard is not venomous.

When moving, the panana lizard is actually slower than other lizard species.

Panana lizards are also cold-blooded animals that make them have to warm themselves when they are cold and take shelter when they are hot.

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In addition, the panana lizard has four legs, five fingers, and non-pointed teeth but has a strong bite that makes it difficult to remove.

The legs of the panana lizard serve to swing and regulate the direction of its large body movement when in the water.

Also read: 18 types of pythons in Indonesia, some can prey on humans

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