Sand boas surface en masse, raising fears of drought

Sand boas surface en masse, raising fears of drought
A sand boas creeps out of the sand, looking for water.
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Panamaram, Wayanad: Snakes have been emerging in dozens out of dry soil here after the recent flood in Wayanad. It is said this phenomenon is symptomatic of a looming drought.

Several sand boas (iruthala moori in Malayalam) have come out of the soil ostensibly as earthworms started dying since the soil lost its water content and got extremely warm.

Hundreds of sand boas are emerging on alleys, fields and even inside houses at Panamaram, Trissilery and Nadavayal areas. Environmental experts say they are coming out as the soil has lost its moisture.

The flood is seen to have affected the lifestyle of so many creatures, like earthworms, sand boas, antlion (kuzhiyana), mongoose, rabbit etc. The change in life pattern of the creature is perceived as a sign of a possible huge drought in Wayanad.

Sand boas, which cannot survive without moisture, could die en masse. The forest department has included it in the 4th schedule, considering the fact that it is an endangered species.

They are burrowing nonvenomous snakes.

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