Rediscovery of the extinct Clarión Nightsnake in Mexico

Our nature is full of surprises!


The last time anyone saw a Clarion nightsnake was in 1936. Now, after going missing for close to 80 years, researchers have rediscovered the species on the remote Mexican island called Isla Clarión.

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Clarion nightsnake by Daniel Mulcahy

Vertebrates are currently going extinct at an alarming rate, largely because of habitat loss, global warming, infectious diseases, and human introductions. Island ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to invasive species and other ecological disturbances. The Islas Revillagigedo are a remote group of four islands, 700–1100 km off the western coast of mainland Mexico and are home to many endemic plants and animals, several of which are currently threatened or have already gone extinct. Here, scientists recount the initial discovery of an endemic snake Hypsiglena ochrorhyncha unaocularus Tanner on Isla Clarión.

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