Snakes Used To Have Legs, New Fossil Shows

It is a long-accepted truism that there is not a single animal on Earth that would be less creepy if it had more legs. Turkeys, for example, are already a mishmash of genetic freakiness, but add another six to twelve legs to them and you don't just have enough drumsticks to go around at Thanksgiving, you have a moral imperative to slaughter every one of the ungodly abominations that crosses your path. John Wick probably would've owed those gangsters a favor if his beagle had been a decapod. To in no way quote George Orwell, "regular legs good, more legs bad."

And sadly, it's a fact that holds sway even over the most unlovable and least belegged members of the animal kingdom. You might think that snakes would benefit from the addition of lil' paws to their serpentine forms. You'd be wrong. And, most tragically of all, science can now prove it.

Snakes with legs: sleep well, America

According to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an organization that helpfully sounds like screaming if you sound out its initials, not only did snakes once have legs, but they managed to hang onto them for tens of millions of years. This creepshow of a revelation comes to us via the discovery of a group of beautifully preserved fossils in Argentina. The remains, belonging to a species called Najash rionegrina, gave scientists a new look at ancient snakes, specifically the fact that they possessed nubby wee hind legs that just sort of hung out on the backs of their bodies like so many third wheels. 

Needless to say, this is terrible news for anyone who has ever suspected that snakes would kick us if they could, but great news for... someone? Someone weird, probably. We're drawing a blank on who would be happy about this. The scientists who discovered it, presumably. Everyone else is probably just unsettled.