Scientists from James Cook University have discovered two critically endangered species of sea snakes they thought were extinct. They were basically hiding in plain sight on Ashmore Reef in the Timor Sea, they just hadn't been since in over 15 years.
A Western Australia Parks and Wildlife Officer, Grant Griffin, sent a photo of the snakes in for identification.
"We were blown away, these potentially extinct snakes were there in plain sight, living on one of Australia's natural icons, Ningaloo Reef," says lead author Blanche D'Anastasi from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at JCU. "What is even more exciting is that they were courting, suggesting that they are members of a breeding population."