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Flying Snakes



Flying Snakes
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.57

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    desirable, wrapping, freefall, venomous, parachute-like, undulate, take-off, colubrid, daring, rear-fanged, parachute, constrict, downward, assault, extremely, suspect
     content words:    Southeast Asia


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Flying Snakes   

1     In the tropical rainforests of South and Southeast Asia lives five snake species that know how to travel in style. Unlike other snakes that crawl, climb, or swim, these snakes "fly”! This unusual mode of transportation is how they got their name -- flying snakes.
 
2     Of course, flying snakes don't really fly. They don't have wings. Nonetheless, as flying snakes launch from one tree, undulate across the sky, and land onto another tree, they appear to be flying with a pair of invisible wings! So, how do flying snakes perform such a daring stunt?
 
3     When flying snake climbs to a desirable take-off spot, it first dangles from a tree branch high above the ground. Holding onto the branch with its tail, the flying snake hangs like a hook. Then, suddenly, the flying snake seems to lose its grasp and starts to fall. Well, the freefall is not an accident. It is how the flying snake launches its "flight."

Paragraphs 4 to 8:
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