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Flying snakes? Virginia Tech researchers study how they glide through the sky

Luckily, Paradise tree snakes are only found in south and southeast Asia

Scientists have known about the Paradise tree snake for some time, but they never really understood how the species, and others like it, are able to glide through the air.
Scientists have known about the Paradise tree snake for some time, but they never really understood how the species, and others like it, are able to glide through the air. (WSLS)

Snakes on the ground are one thing... but now we’re learning they’re also in the sky.

Scientists have known about the Paradise tree snake for some time, but they never really understood how the species, and others like it, are able to glide through the air.

Researchers at Virginia Tech conducted controlled tests with the snakes in an indoor environment.

They discovered the undulating motion the snakes exhibit while gliding stabilizes them, which allows them to fly further.

Since that undulation is the same movement they use to slither on the ground, it was previously thought it was just a base motor pattern.

Next, the researchers want to learn how the snakes generate lift and how they turn in the air.

Paradise tree snakes only live in south and southeast Asia. Though they are venomous, their venom is weak.

Like so many other snakes, they are considered harmless to humans.