A member of the boa family, South America’s green anaconda is the heaviest snake in the world. Like all boas, it kills its prey by coiling its muscular body around the creature and squeezing until the animal can no longer breathe. Anacondas like to be in or near water, and they are excellent swimmers. Their eyes and nostrils are on top of their head, so they can keep their body hidden underwater as they wait for prey. Surprisingly, humans are the anaconda’s most dangerous predator. In many parts of South America, anacondas are hunted, both legally and illegally, for their skin and for sale in the illegal pet trade. Often, these snakes are killed just because people fear and dislike them. Look for these beautiful creatures in a corner exhibit of our famous Reptile House. Did you know? A group of anacondas is called a bed or knot.