World’s Smallest Snake Found in Barbados!

Excerpt from BBC News:

By Jennifer Carpenter
Science reporter, BBC News

The world’s smallest snake, averaging just 10cm (4 inches) and as thin as a spaghetti noodle, has been discovered on the Caribbean island of Barbados.

The snake, found beneath a rock in a tiny fragment of threatened forest, is thought to be at the very limit of how small a snake can evolve to be.

Females produce only a single, massive egg – and the young hatch at half of their adult body weight.

This new discovery is described in the journal Zootaxa.

The snake – named Leptotyphlops carlae – is the smallest of the 3,100 known snake species and was uncovered by Dr Blair Hedges, a biologist from Penn State University, US.

Read the full article at BBC News online.

Thanks again to the Amateur Naturalist for the tip. 🙂


15 Responses to World’s Smallest Snake Found in Barbados!

  1. Blake says:

    Snakes give me the willies, even if they are small enough to fit on a quarter. lol.

    That is pretty neat though!

  2. kapesun says:

    I have no idea how small baby snakes are, but I saw something very very much like this in my back yard (it wasn’t a worm either). I live in a subtropical zone on saltwater with mangroves all around. Maybe there’s other tiny snakes too.

  3. ronnie says:

    if you think that ‘s scary i read in the papers that some wise guy released 6 cobras in tobago about two weeks ago.three pairs of adults .i don’t think that tobago is ready for a spawing trio of snakes like that. god help them

  4. Joy says:

    I wonder if this species is poisonous and can kill humans?

  5. Asphodel says:

    Kapesun, wanna do a house swap? I live in Kuwait, its desert here. But if that wont do, I have a house in Goa, India as well!

  6. Alan says says:

    yes these little snakes you call are not snakes but lizards with no legs harmless very shy will scatter if disturbed these are called slowworms years ago they were called lizards because they had legs use to live in ponds but lived on land as well as years went by they stayed on land loosing their legs which gave them the name slowworms their eggs are little cubes jelly form and when they hatch they are so beautiful I use to keep them for studying their way of life. they are also shine’y browny in colour.Alan Derby

  7. Alan Again says:

    the underneath of these slowworms has a rare find not by us but them selfs they glow at nightime but only by their eye contact, and not to man cool though eh males are Darker, females light bronze pinky colour underneath. also if you pi ck them up they will squirt out there motion’s to get free and also lose their tail to escape and will grow again coopl eh bless them I love my wild lfe.

  8. Sapna says:

    I was shocked to see this blog. You know why?

    Almost 2 months ago i found a very very similar creature slithering in my house. I’m from New Delhi.

    I took few pictures of it. It was so dark and small I had to zoom the picture to realize this was a real snake. It probably came in the new Aloe vera plant pots my mother got from a nursery. But its the same looking snake as this. Same size same color same thickness.

    I’m still not sure though. I wouldn’t be until some expert confirms it. You know anyone?


  9. Jason says:

    This snake can also be found in Aruba, it’s really dark, silver, brown snake. It can be mistaken with a rainworm when spotted. But when you look closely you can see it’s a snake, here we call them Colebra Mispel (Misple Snake) So it’s not really a new species

    • zaxy says:

      Jason- thanks for your comment!
      There are many small snakes in the world, several which resemble large worms. The presence of similar species on other islands is common.

      It’s important to remember that the length of time since the populations were split often leads to divergent evolution- resulting in genetically separate species. Conversely, completely different species of snake may have evolved to resemble each other (convergent evolution), often because they fill a similar niche in their ecosystems. I encourage people who are familiar with an animal they believe to be identical to the newly discovered species to contact any of the researchers mentioned in the articles! Researchers are always VERY glad to hear of other occurrences of animals ‘exactly the same as’ or ‘similar to’ or even ‘just like’ the species they’ve been studying. Every link and lead brings more information and creates a clearer picture!

      Who knows- you could be instrumental to helping place this species in its rightful place on the Tree of Life! 😀

  10. dan says:

    uhm.. this snake is a common snake in south africa and is referred to as a grass snake. not a rare find at all.

  11. mya says:

    They have those here on kauai too. there are no snakes on kauai. but there are these things. the hawaiians tell me that they call them little snakes, but they are actually related to worms.

  12. fiemma says:

    We definitely found one of these here (St. Kitts) a few months ago.

  13. Martin says:

    OMG! Now I read that this snake is a recent discovery! I,m from Argentina and here are a pretty common species… we call these “viborita ciega” (little blind snake.

    I have several pics, if you want it just write an email at

    Sorry about my english.

  14. arturo says:

    en la cd de tampico Mrxico, encontre un ejemplar similar a lo que presentan

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