An "exceptionally rare" two-headed venomous snake has been found in a woman's backyard in northern Virginia. Both heads are capable of catching and swallowing prey - and that's where the trouble starts.
"Too many challenges living day to day with two heads".
Two-headed serpents are known to fight themselves over who gets to swallow prey, and these animals can have trouble coordinating their movements when responding to danger.
"Wild bicephalic snakes are exceptionally rare, because they just don't live that long", Kleopfer wrote.
"Radiographs revealed that the two-headed snake has two tracheas (the left one is more developed), two esophaguses (the right one is more developed), and the two heads share one heart and one set of lungs".
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"It appears as though the left head is more dominant - it's generally more active and responsive to stimulus", a spokesperson for the veterinary hospital said.
He told USA Today that the snake was young, probably around two weeks old, and that the "little guy" wasn't much of a threat to humans.
One commenter said, 'This is what nightmares are made of'.
Kleopfer said the rare little snake is being cared for by an experienced viper keeper in Virginia. "The herpetologist will continue monitoring the snake; if it survives, it will likely be placed in an educational facility".
Right now, however, this tiny snake is mainly lashing out at insects, according to Kleopfer.