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Species of the Day – Saint Lucia Racer (Liophis ornatus)

December 26, 2012

Species of the Day - Saint Lucia Racer (Liophis ornatus)

Saint Lucia Racer is world’s rarest snakes, the Saint Lucia racer is clinging to a precarious existence on the tiny Caribbean island. It was declared extinct for more than 75 years after it was rediscovered in 2012 that as few as 18 individuals remain.

Very little is known about the biology of the Saint Lucia racer.It is a small, non-venomous snake which preys on lizards and amphibians. Saint Lucia racer is thought to be diurnal; however, its breeding biology has yet to be described.

Saint Lucia Racer is now restricted to Maria Major which is a dry, arid island, with large cactus thickets and low deciduous forest. In 1936, it was declared extinct, but it reappeared in 1973. It was believed to have gone extinct but after it’s rediscovery in 2012 has renewed hopes for the species conservation.

Saint Lucia racer are extremely close to extinction once widespread across the island, the introduction of small Asian mongooses (Herpestes javanicus) has decimated the species. The survival of the Saint Lucia racer is dependant upon the implementation of major conservation measures. Maria islands a nature reserve in 1982 created to protect Saint Lucia Racer and other endemic species of the island.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. December 31, 2012 10:55 pm

    Thanks for the likes 🙂 do like my FB Page http://www.facebook.com/wildsalman

    Like

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  1. 10 Caribbean species saved from extinction « wildplanet

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