" --IANS/EFE"
Brasilia, Aug 20 (IANS/EFE) Scientists from four Brazilian institutions have announced the discovery of a new species of non-venomous snake that inhabits the savannas in the central part of the country.

The new serpent has been dubbed Atractus Spinalis and belongs to the Dipsadidae family, found in several countries of the Americas and some Caribbean islands.

The snake was found and identified by scientists of the federal universities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, who carried out their studies in collaboration with researchers from the Brazilian National Centre for Research and Conservation of Reptiles and Amphibians, and with the support of the Boticario Group Foundation for Nature Protection.

The specimen found is 30 cm long, its skin is reddish with light brown markings and is of a yellowish hue underneath, the foundation said in a statement issued Tuesday.

The communique said it was found under some rocks in the Serra do Espinhaco, a mountain range that extends between the savannas in the states of Minas Gerais and Bahia.

Atractus Spinalis joins the 1,815 species of reptiles and amphibians already identified in Brazil though scientists believe there are many more that are yet to be discovered.

--IANS/EFE

ab/bg


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