INDIA: War on Rats

The dhaman is a yellow-tinted snake, ranging from 4 ft. to 10 ft. in length, that once had the run of the Indian countryside. To the dismay of the Indian Parliament, these are hard times for the dhaman, as well as for the more than 20 other varieties of Indian herpetofauna that prey on, among other things, the domestic brown rat, known as Rattus rattus. Thanks in part to commerce, which values the hide of a snake more than that of a rat, the rodents have been winning the battle against their deadliest enemy. Two weeks ago, India's legislators...

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