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Scientists Discover Venomous Swimming Centipede in Vietnam

It seems one of our worst nightmares has come true as scientists have confirmed the existence of a huge species of swimming centipede in Southeast Asia.

Specimens of the amphibious creature, named Scolopendra cataracta, have been found in Laos, Thailand and Vietnam, according to National Geographic. The first sighting of the centipede was in 1928 in Vietnam, but its full documentation was only published last month in science journal ZooKeys.

“It was pretty horrific-looking: very big with long legs and a horrible dark, greenish-black color,” entomologist George Beccaloni, who encountered the creepy crawly in 2001 in Thailand, told National Geographic.

The species’ existence was doubted by experts for years as centipedes are typically found in dry habitats and no species were known to be amphibious.

Like all centipedes, it is venomous and carnivorous, with a bite usually described as a searing pain that radiates through the length of an arm or leg, so you have that to look forward to during your next trip to Da Lat’s waterfalls.

[Photo via National Geographic]

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