When a woman in North Virginia stumbled across a snake in her neighbor’s yard she did a double take. There, on the ground, was a baby copperhead snake with two heads!
“I wanted to look away but couldn’t stop looking at it. Plays trick[s] on the eyes,” Stephanie Myers told USA Today after finding the snake and posting photos of it to her Facebook page.
The two-headed copperhead is an “extremely rare” find because two-headed snakes usually don’t survive for long in the wild; the snake’s two heads can’t coordinate in a way to catch prey or escape predators.
The snake was brought to The Wildlife Center of Virginia where it is currently being examined by state herpetologist J.D. Kleopfer.
X-rays revealed that the rest of the baby reptile’s anatomy is shared but that one head has a more developed esophagus, so they will be feeding the left head so that it gets its nutritional needs.
The left head appears to be more dominant, the wildlife center says. “It’s generally more active and responsive to stimulus. It would be better for the right head to eat, but it may be a challenge since the left head appears more dominant.”
Strangely enough the separated heads seem to be oblivious to each other, but the snake is currently eating and responding well, which is a good sign for its survival. If it does continue to survive plans are to donate the snake to a zoo.