A baby snake trapped inside amber that lived during the age of dinosaurs has been discovered by scientists.
The incredible find, in what is now Myanmar, was made several years ago but the remains were originally identified as a centipede before they were sold to a private collector.
However, an international team of experts have now concluded that the fossil trapped inside the amber is in fact a baby snake that lived 99 million years ago.
Professor Michael Caldwell, from the University of Alberta in Canada, who specialises in studying ancient snakes and lizard, said: ‘”The baby is unquestionably a snake.
“This is the very first baby snake fossil that we have ever found.”
The skull is missing from the snake but the team were able to analyse 97 vertebrae plus attached ribs and they concluded that the backbone of snakes have changed very little over the course of nearly 100 million years.
They also discovered fragments of plants and insects found inside the amber that confirm the snake lived in forests during the Cretaceous period.
A second amber fossil appears to contain part of the shed skin of another much larger creature – but scientists cannot determine if it is a snake or a lizard.