largest snake dead
The world’s largest snake found dead. Image: X/Twitter

Home » Tragic loss for biodiversity: World’s largest snake found dead

Tragic loss for biodiversity: World’s largest snake found dead

World’s largest snake, the northern green anaconda, found dead in the Amazon. Researchers investigate the tragic loss for biodiversity.

02-04-24 20:22
largest snake dead
The world’s largest snake found dead. Image: X/Twitter

Five weeks ago, researchers made an incredible discovery while filming a National Geographic series called “Pole to Pole with Will Smith” in the Brazilian rainforest. Blood and tissue samples revealed a five-and-a-half percent genetic difference between the southern green anaconda and the northern green anaconda, making them two distinct species.

The two species likely diverged around 10 million years ago, but their similarities prevented scientists from noticing the difference until now. This groundbreaking finding has shed new light on the diversity of snake species in the Amazon and has opened up new avenues for research and conservation efforts.


One of the newly discovered northern green anacondas, dubbed Ana Julia, was a colossal individual measuring an astonishing 6.3 meters and weighing 200 kilograms.

This discovery made the northern green anaconda the largest snake species on Earth, slightly surpassing its southern counterpart. Ana Julia was a testament to the incredible biodiversity found in the Amazon rainforest and a symbol of the region’s untamed wilderness.


However, in a heartbreaking turn of events, Ana Julia was found dead in the river this weekend. Biologist Freek Vonk, who was part of the research team, shared the news on Instagram, expressing his deep sorrow.

He described Ana Julia as “an iron-strong animal, a survivor, one that’s been swimming around Bonito for decades.” Vonk emphasised the significant blow to biodiversity, particularly for this species of giant snakes, as there are not many of them left in the wild.


Rumours circulated that someone shot the snake, but authorities have not confirmed this. They are currently investigating the cause of death, as Ana Julia appeared to be in good health and in the prime of her life.

Wildlife photographer Cristian Dimitris, who captured the snake on camera, confirmed that it was indeed the same individual by comparing the unique markings on her face, which are akin to human fingerprints.

The loss of Ana Julia is a stark reminder of the fragility of the Amazon’s ecosystem and the importance of protecting its incredible biodiversity. The northern green anaconda, now recognised as a separate species, faces an uncertain future with limited numbers in the wild.

As we continue to explore and study the wonders of the Amazon, we must prioritise conservation efforts to ensure the survival of these magnificent creatures for generations to come. The legacy of Ana Julia will live on as a symbol of the beauty and resilience of the Amazon, and her loss will serve as a rallying cry for those who seek to protect this invaluable natural heritage.

ALSO READ: Home Affairs plan to employ thousands of young graduates