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New species of snake discovered sitting on shelf at North Texas university after 40 years

A new species of snake is in the science books after it was found inside a jar resting on a Texas shelf for more than 40 years. (Image/video courtesy: KTVT/Newspath)

A new species of snake is in the science books after it was found inside a jar resting on a Texas shelf for more than 40 years.

Back in 1976, researchers found a common coral snake in a remote part of Mexico. When they opened up its stomach, its last meal included a mysterious 10-inch snake.

"I've been back to that area at least a dozen times, but I never found one of these snakes. It's always exciting to find something that you know, no one has ever seen this before," said Jonathan Campbell, a biologist at the University of Texas-Arlington.

Scientists saved it inside a formaldehyde jar at UT-Arlington. They recently decided to study the specimen and discovered not only is it a new species -- but an entirely new genus.

The new snake has never been found alive in the wild.

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