Friday, February 12, 2010

Python/Cobra Hybrids on the History Channel

In a recent program that aired on the History Channel, one that was full of sensational errors and propaganda, some bozo speculated that the feral pythons in the Florida Everglades might mate with cobras (which MIGHT also have escaped in the area), creating a new giant super-snake. I'd like to address this right now: it isn't possible. Pythons and cobras are genetically incompatible. Ask any biologist who knows anything about reptiles, and they'll tell you that that's about as likely as a human and a squirrel hybridizing. You can certainly mix python species with one another (and even then, not all are compatible) and the same with cobras and related species, but pythons and cobras...it's not going to happen.
If you don't believe me, then riddle me this: pythons and cobras both come from Africa and Asia and can be found in the exact same geographical locations, yet, in millions of years they have never hybridized. So, sorry, Monster Quest, but the super-snake you're hoping to find is hanging out with the other creatures from your show—El Chupucabra, the Loch Ness monster, Big Foot, Mothman, Champy and the like—in your imagination.

4 comments:

  1. Interesting fact: The king cobra, ophiophagus hannah, has been known to eat young reticulated pythons.

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  2. i know that venimous snakes are not compatable with non venimous snakes because they breed in a different way and have different sex organs. That being said i saw the live snake on the program, so either they made the best robotic snake i have ever seen, someone may have made it in a lab, or it happened in nature. i would love to believe that it happened in nature but that is just me fantasizing and i think most scientist would agree. To be human is to be curious. If anyone can show me the site to view the snake online i would be most gratefull. i can be reached at Jeremiah.Holmes24@yahoo.com

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    1. its not only that venomous cant breed with non venomous because they breed in a different way. there are venomous and constrictors that lay eggs and some that have live birth. on the program you probably saw something that looked completely normal and wasnt a hybrid of any sort and you just didnt know the difference. Breeding between a cobra and a python cannot happen and will not happen.

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  3. The expert was addressing the notion that cobras and pythons could foster hybrid offspring, and even he was saying that it's only possible with closely related species. The way the interview was edited suggests it's possible, because the History Channel is run purely for ratings. @ anonymous, the hybrid you saw wasn't that of a cobra and python, but a rat snake and king snake. Find better subtitles for your TV shows before you act like you know what you're talking about. I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that you're not an native english speaking moron who can't spell venomous.

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