A new study into pythons and boas has for the first time found the two groups of snakes evolved independently to share similar traits, shedding new light on how the reptiles evolved.
Pythons and boas are two families that include the largest snakes in the world, like the reticulated python and the anaconda boa, which have been known to grow close to eight meters in length.
The Australian National University (ANU) study found that by living in the same habitat, pythons and boas evolved independently to look similar. This happened at least five times in different habitats. Aquatic pythons look like aquatic boas, burrowing pythons look like borrowing boas and tree-dwelling pythons look like tree-dwelling boas.