I don’t know about you, but I sleep a lot better these days knowing someone finally came along and proved whether or not the eyelash viper of Costa Rico eats lizards during the daytime.

Eyelash Viper

An eyelash viper is a small, poisonous snake that spends most of its life in trees. Most herpetologists believe it only eats at night, but a handful of rogue herpetologists refuse to tow the establishment line. They insist the eyelash viper will feed during the day, too.

The problem is proving it.

We would still be in the dark about the eyelash viper’s eating habits had it not been for a pair of graduate students who finagled a grant to fund an expedition to the jungles of Costa Rica. Armed with only a couple of tents, some cameras and 400 cans of beer, they sought out to dispel the myth that the eyelash viper was only a nocturnal feeder.

It seems like a relatively simple experiment but, oddly enough, they had no success for most of the trip . Toward the end of their study one of them came up with a brilliant idea of how to test their theory. He caught a lizard. He carried the lizard around until he saw an eyelash viper resting on the side of a tree in broad daylight. He let the lizard go at the base of the tree and herded it, as it were, toward the snake. Lo and behold, the eyelash viper struck the lizard and eventually swallowed it down.

What took them so long to come up with a relatively simple and obvious experiment remains a mystery, but it probably had a lot to do with the 400 cans of beer. Regardless, the whole thing was captured on video and submitted as incontrovertible proof that the eyelash viper will eat during the daylight hours.

“Well that settles that,” I said to my wife, Marianne, at the end of the documentary. “It ate the lizard.”

Marianne didn’t look so sure. “That only proves it will eat a lizard during the day. What about frogs or birds? Maybe it only eats them at night.”

As hard as it is to accept, she has a point. The controversy rages on.

I plan to launch a Kick Starter campaign to fund my trip to Costa Rica. It will take a boat load of money. The beer budget alone will be phenomenal.