Sucuri: taxonomy, species, habitat, food

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anaconda is the popular name given to snakes of the genus Eunectes. These snakes stand out for being animals large scales that do not kill their victims by poisoning, but by constriction. In this process, the anacondas wrap themselves in the body of the prey so intensely that the flow of blood to vital organs is impeded, leading to the animal's death.

They also stand out for having semi-aquatic habits. Currently, there are four species of anaconda: Eunectes murinus (green anaconda), Eunectes notaeus (yellow anaconda), Eunectes beniensis (Beni anaconda) and Eunectes deschauenseei (spotted anaconda).

Read too: Komodo dragon — the largest lizard in the world

Summary about anaconda

  • Anacondas are snakes of the genus Eunectes, which includes four species: Eunectes murinus (green anaconda), Eunectes notaeus (yellow anaconda) Eunectes beniensis (Beni anaconda) and Eunectes deschauenseei (spotted anaconda).

  • They are among the largest snakes on the planet.

  • They have semiaquatic habits.

  • They are very agile animals in the water, while in the terrestrial environment they move slowly.

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  • Are carnivorous animals that kill their prey by constriction.

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Taxonomic classification of anaconda

Currently, there are four different species of anacondas, snakes also known as anacondas, sucurijubas, boiaçus or viborons. They're from same family as boa constrictors, however, belong to the genus Eubectes. Below is the complete taxonomic classification of the anaconda:

Kingdom: animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: reptilia

Order: squamate

Family: Boidae

Gender: Eunectes

Species: Eunectes murinus / Eunectes notaeus / Eunectes beniensis / Eunectes deschauenseei

Characteristics of anaconda

anacondas are reptiles in large, with species reaching several meters in length. the species Eunectes murinus, for example, it is described as the largest snake species in the world by body volume. However, the species is not the largest in length.

Currently, the reticulated python is considered the largest snake in the world in length, reaching about 7 meters. The green anaconda, in turn, has about 6 meters. It is worth noting, however, that there are reports of people who claim to have seen green anacondas of more than 10 meters in length, and the maximum size of this species is still a matter of much discussion.

At colorit's variesm according to the species analyzed. The green anaconda, for example, has a green or brown background color. The yellow anaconda, as its name suggests, has a yellowish bottom of the body.

are animals with a lot of muscle strength, an important feature for capturing prey, since anacondas Woodsm by constriction. They are able to move with agility in the water, being slower in land environment due to their great weight and length.

anaconda species

There are four species of living anacondas. All species occur in Brazil, with the exception of the anaconda. We will see each of them below.

→ Green anaconda

The green anaconda (Eunectes murinus) is also called true anaconda and stands out as the best studied species among the anaconda species. It occurs in Brazil and several other parts of South America such as Colombia, Paraguay, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Peru, Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.

Features background colorolive green, being observed in some individuals the brown color. This species also has brown dorsal spots with black edges along its body. It stands out for its size, with individuals presenting, in most cases, length between 4 and 5 meters and weighing about 100 kg. Larger sizes can be observed, and the maximum size of the species is still a matter of discussion among specialists.

 Anaconda feeding in an aquatic environment.
The anaconda kills its prey by constriction.

The green anaconda has a mating system known as breeding cake. This peculiar form of reproduction consists of several males coiled around a single female. During the reproductive season, the female releases substances that attract males, which are positioned close to the cloaca. In breeding cakes, more than ten males have been observed at once. Due to the fact that females are larger than males, it is common for people to believe that the breeding cake is the mother with her young.

The green anaconda's gestation is, on average, 202 days, and the litter can vary between five and 75 pups. The most common is that the anaconda presents a litter between 20 and 40 puppies. In the wild, a green anaconda can live for about ten years, while in captivity it can live up to 30 years.

→ Yellow anaconda

Also called the Pantanal anaconda, the yellow anaconda (Eunectes notaeus) has the bottom dit's yours yellowish body. It is a large snake. Females are larger than males and can reach about 4 meters in length. Males are about 2.5 meters long.

yellow anacondas are found in flooded areas of the Paraná and Paraguay river basins, in four countries. Gestation in this species lasts between 120 and 180 days.

→ Beni anaconda

asucuri-in-beni (Eunectes beniensis) is so called poisos first copies were found in department of Beni, Bolivia. So far, few individuals of the species have been studied, so little information about their way of life is known.

It is a medium-sized species. The largest known male measured 2.17 m, and the female, 3.30 m. Previously, this species was considered a hybrid of Eunectes murinus and Eunectes notaeusdue to its morphology.

→ spotted anaconda

The spotted anaconda (Eunectes deschauenseei) is a species with small geographic distribution, occurring in Brazil, French Guiana and possibly in Suriname. And the smallest species of anaconda known, with males reaching up to 1.92 m, and females, 3 m in length. Few individuals of the species were studied, therefore, information about the species is still precarious.

anaconda habitat

Sucuri in an aquatic environment.
 The anaconda is a semi-aquatic snake.

Anacondas are snakes always found in association with aquatic environments, being observed in rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps and swamps of South America. They occur mainly in shallow water bodies covered by vegetation.

These are animals that have semiaquatic habits, and the genus name is a reference to this feature. The name Eunectes is derived from two Greek words, I and nektes, which mean “good” and “swimmer”.

Know more: Giant Otter — the largest semiaquatic carnivore in South America

Does anaconda have poison?

the anacondas are snakes that have no venom, therefore, the death of their prey does not happen due to poisoning. To kill their victims, anacondas wrap their muscular bodies around their prey and squeeze it in such a way as to interrupt its blood flow. This interruption causes the oxygen not to reach the vital organs and the prey dies. Wrapping the body around the victim also makes it difficult for the animal to breathe.

anaconda feeding

anacondas are carnivorous animals that can feed on both small and large animals. The diet varies according to the species and the area in which the animal lives. The anacondas are considered animals with generalist eating habits, being able to feed on amphibians, reptiles such as alligators and turtles, birds, fish and mammals such as capybaras, domestic animals and even jaguars.

By Vanessa Sardinha dos Santos
Biology teacher
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