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Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | Ganesh S.R.,Chennai Snake Park
Zootaxa | Year: 2013

A new species of cat snake, related to Boiga beddomei (Wall, 1909), is described from the dry forests of eastern Peninsular India. It occupies a large geographic range from Berhampore (type locality), near the River Mahanadi in the northeast to Kaigal near the southern Eastern Ghats in the southwest. The new species is diagnosed by having the following combination of characters: 19 dorsal scale rows at midbody, a high number of ventral scales for the genus Boiga (248-259), a yellowish-green dorsal colouration with numerous faint black bands, an uniform, unpatterned yellow-coloured venter and a relatively short tail (0.180-0.200 of the total length). Copyright © 2013 Magnolia Press.

Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | Hauser S.,71 Wiang Phing Road
Asian Herpetological Research | Year: 2013

The first record of Ptyas nigromarginata (Blyth, 1854) from Thailand and a new record from China are reported. Literature and internet sources were searched for previous records of this species to establish its geographic and altitudinal distributions in Asia. The distribution in India was adapted to the new state division of the northern part of the country. The results show that the species almost exclusively occurs in hill evergreen and montane forests of the Himalayan foothills and mountain ranges continuous with it, at altitudes of 1000-2300 m above sea level.

David P.,CNRS Systematics, Biodiversity and Evolution Institute | Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | Van Rooijen J.,Tulpentuin 313
Zootaxa | Year: 2013

Three species of the genus Amphiesma Duméril, Bibron and Duméril, 1854 have long been confused in the literature, with each other and with other species of the genus. Amphiesma khasiense (Boulenger, 1890) has been considered to inhabit a large geographical region, extending from north-eastern India, east to Vietnam and southern Thailand. Amphiesma boulengeri (Gressitt, 1937) has been regarded as a species endemic to south-eastern China. Amphiesma inas (Laidlaw, 1901) has been recorded from West Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia (Sumatra). A multivariate analysis of morphometric and meristic characters shows that these three species can be separated by combinations of characters in the scalation and pattern, the most obvious being the structure of the postocular streak. On the basis of our analysis and after comparison with name-bearing type specimens, Amphiesma khasiense is restricted to north-eastern India, Myanmar, western Yunnan Province of China, northern Laos and northern and western Thailand. Other populations from south-eastern China, Vietnam, other parts of Laos, Cambodia and central Thailand, which have been recorded in the literature as A. khasiense, A. johannis or Amphiesma modestum (Günther, 1875), should be referred to Amphiesma boulengeri. Amphiesma inas (Laidlaw, 1901) is a valid species endemic to mountain ranges of southern Peninsular Thailand and West Malaysia. The mention of Amphiesma inas in Sumatra is erroneous, being based on the second known specimen of Amphiesma kerinciense David and Das, 2003, which is here redescribed. A key to species of the Amphiesma khasiense group and other species sharing a greyish-brown background without conspicuous dark and pale stripes, is provided. Copyright © 2013 Magnolia Press.

Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | Van Rooijen J.,Zoological Museum Amsterdam
Journal of Herpetology | Year: 2011

We investigated the taxonomic status of the Indian forms of the Dendrelaphis pictus (Gmelin, 1789) group on the basis of multivariate analyses of morphological data taken from 176 museum specimens and two living specimens. A geographically isolated form from the Western Ghats, southwest India, is described as a new species. The subspecies Dendrelaphis pictus andamanensis (Anderson, 1871), an endemic from the Andaman Islands, is given specific status. Finally, the population of D. pictus from Indochina and northeast India, although superficially homogeneous, is shown to be comprised of two morphologically distinct forms. These forms are distributed parapatrically with a transition near the northern and northwestern borders of Indochina. The two forms are considered to represent distinct evolutionary lineages. The name Dendrelaphis proarchos (Wall, 1909) is revalidated to represent the northwestern form. The southeastern form is referred to as D. pictus (Gmelin, 1789). Whether intergradation between D. pictus and D. proarchos occurs at the contact zone is not clear. © 2011 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | Luo J.,Institute of Biology
Zootaxa | Year: 2011

A new species of the genus Lycodon from the Gaoligong Mountains, Yunnan, China is described, Lycodon gongshan sp. nov. This species is similar to L. fasciatus, but differs in its longer tail, especially in males, and larger number of subcaudals, especially in females. The number of ventrals and maximum body size is greater in both sexes of the new species. From the Lycodon ruhstrati group, the new species differs in the colour of the belly and the dorsal bands. This new species seems to be endemic to Yunnan Province, People's Republic of China. The holotype of Ophites fasciatus Anderson, 1879 appears to have been lost, so a neotype is designated in order to address the status of this taxon. Copyright © 2011.

David P.,CNRS Systematics, Biodiversity and Evolution Institute | Das I.,University Malaysia Sarawak | Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology
Zootaxa | Year: 2011

This paper deals with three nomenclatural and taxonomic problems affecting two species groups of the colubrid snake genus Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826: (i) A neotype is formally designated for Coronella cyclura Cantor, 1839, associating this specific nomen with populations from India, Bangladesh and Myanmar with 19 scale rows at midbody; (ii) Oligodon kheriensis Acharji & Ray, 1936 is shown to be a valid species of the Oligodon cyclurus group occurring in northern India and Nepal; (iii) The type-locality of Simotes multifasciatus Jan & Sordelli, 1865 is shown to be Sultanpur, India. This taxon is considered a synonym of Oligodon cinereus (Günther, 1864). The range of this species in India is extended. The status of specimens of Oligodon cinereus from India and Myanmar is briefly discussed. Specimens from Thailand identified as Oligodon cinereus multifasciatus and Oligodon cinereus swinhonis (Günther, 1864) are referred to Oligodon joynsoni (Smith, 1917). India is home to at least 21 species of the genus Oligodon, an updated list of which is provided. © 2011 Magnolia Press.

Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology | David P.,CNRS Systematics, Biodiversity and Evolution Institute
Zootaxa | Year: 2012

Morphological variation was investigated across the entire geographic range of the snakes of the Xenochrophis piscator species group. Our results, based on morphological univariate analyses, show the existence of several well-defined clusters identified as species. Xenochrophis flavipunctatus (Hallowell, 1861) is distinct from X. piscator (Schneider, 1799) and sympatric with it over a large area. Xenochrophis tytleri (Blyth, 1863) is confirmed as the valid combination for the population living on the Andaman Islands. Xenochrophis asperrimus (Boulenger, 1891) is confirmed, with species status, for populations from Sri Lanka. Xenochrophis melanzostus (Gravenhorst, 1807) is accepted, as a distinct species most probably endemic to Java. Xenochrophis schnurrenbergeri Kramer, 1977 is confirmed for populations from Nepal, southeastern Pakistan, and northern and eastern India. Tropidonotus sanctijohannis Boulenger, 1891 seems to be a montane colour morph of X. piscator and is not regarded here as valid. The second population of "X. piscator" on Sri Lanka is regarded as different from that of the mainland, but it is not named here due to the uncertain relationships among populations of southern India and Sri Lanka. The variation of X. piscator sensu stricto is discussed. All taxa are redescribed on the basis of new material. The history of all synonyms is discussed and neotypes are designated for Hydrus palustris Schneider, 1799, Coluber melanzostus Gravenhorst, 1807 and Amphiesma flavipunctatum Hallowell, 1861. The holotype of Hydrus piscator Schneider 1799 has been rediscovered and is discussed. © 2012 Magnolia Press.

David P.,CNRS Systematics, Biodiversity and Evolution Institute | Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology
Zootaxa | Year: 2012

A new species of the genus Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826, Oligodon wagneri sp. nov., is described on the basis of a single specimen originating from Nias Island, off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. It differs from other species of the region by the combination of a constant number (15) of dorsal scale rows, undivided hemipenes, entire anal plate, form of den-tition, and dorsal pattern of white crossbars alternating with three irregular reticulations. This new species is compared with other species of the Greater Sunda Islands with 15 or 17 dorsal scale rows. An updated checklist and key to Oligodon species of the region of Sumatra is provided. Copyright © 2012 · Magnolia Press.

Van Rooijen J.,Netherlands Center for Biodiversity Naturalis | Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology
Zootaxa | Year: 2012

The systematics of the wide-ranging southeast Asian colubrid snake Dendrelaphis caudolineatus (Gray, 1834) was investigated on the basis of multivariate analyses of morphological and coloration data for 131 museum specimens representing 28 geographically isolated populations. The results demonstrate that the current taxonomy of D. caudolineatus underestimates species diversity in the Philippines. The following revisions are implemented. 1) Populations from the Philippine island Palawan and adjacent islands currently referred to D. c. caudolineatus (Gray, 1834) are described as a new species, D. levitoni sp. nov. 2) Populations from the Philippine islands Negros, Panay, Mindoro and Masbate, currently assigned to D. c. terrificus (Peters, 1872) and D. c. luzonensis Leviton, 1961 are referred to D. fuliginosus Griffin 1909, which is revalidated. 3) Populations from the southern Philippine islands Basilan, Mindanao, Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, Samar, Polillo, Kalotkot, Catanduanes as well as Southeast Luzon currently referred to D. c. terrificus (Peters, 1872) are referred to D. philippinensis Günther, 1879 which is revalidated. 4) The population from Sulawesi is referred to D. terrificus (Peters, 1872). Currently regarded as a polytypic species composed of five subspecies, D. caudolineatus is here considered to be a monophyletic group comprising eight species. The distributions of these eight species correspond largely with aggregate island complexes formed during periods of reduced sea level during the Pleistocene. However, some deviations indicate post-Pleistocene dispersals across sea barriers. Copyright © 2012 · Magnolia Press.

van Rooijen J.,Netherlands Center for Biodiversity Naturalis | Vogel G.,Society for Southeast Asian Herpetology
Contributions to Zoology | Year: 2010

The colubrid snake Dendrelaphis subocularis is distributed throughout Indochina, the southern limit of its range corresponding with the Isthmus of Kra, an important biogeographic barrier that separates the Indochinese biota from the Sundaic biota. This study presents five museum specimens that represent a hitherto unknown population that inhabits the Sundaic island Java. Thus, the distribution of Dendrelaphis subocularis is disjunct, with the Javan population being isolated by 2000 kilometres from the nearest mainland population. Principal Components Analysis was applied to morphological data taken from the five Javan specimens as well as from 26 museum specimens of Indochinese origin. Regression analysis of the spatial pattern of the resulting scores indicated that: 1) the Javan population exhibits negligible morphological differentiation, and 2) a phenetic cline exists from which the Javan population does not appreciably deviate in spite of its isolated status. These findings suggest a vicariant origin of the Javan population entailing climatic changes and formation of land bridges during Pleistocene glaciations. The Javan and Indochinese populations represent independent sister lineages, and are therefore valid species within the framework of a lineage-based species concept. However, to conform to current taxonomic practice, the Javan population is not named separately due to the fact that it is not diagnosable.

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