Agkistrodon conanti (GLOYD, 1969)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Agkistrodon conanti?
|Higher Taxa||Viperidae, Crotalinae, Colubroidea, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)|
|Common Names||E: conanti: Florida Cottonmouth|
|Synonym||Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti GLOYD 1969: 226|
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — CONANT & COLLINS 1991: 229
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — CROTHER 2000: 56
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — TENNANT & BARTLETT 2000: 491
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — SCHMIDT & KUNZ 2005
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — CROTHER et al. 2012
Agkistrodon piscivorus conanti — LILLYWHITE 2014: 24
Agkistrodon conanti — BURBRINK & GUIHER 2014
Agkistrodon conanti — SHEEHY et al. 2017
Agkistrodon conanti — CROTHER et al. 2017
|Distribution||USA (Florida and S Georgia)|
Type locality: "at edge of Rochelle-Cross Creek Road, about 7 miles southeast of Gainesville, Alachua County, Florida".
|Reproduction||viviparous; facultative parthenogenesis (BOOTH et al. 2012).|
|Types||Holotype: USNM 165962, paratypes: USNM, AMNH, FMNH,|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (conanti): The Florida Cottonmouth (A. conanti) is diagnosed from the subspecies A. p. conanti. This species is a medium- to large-bodied semi-aquatic pit viper with an average adult size 76–122 cm and a maximum size of 189.2 cm (Gloyd & Conant, 1990; Conant & Collins, 1991), with a ratio of tail to total length of 0.15–0.19 in males and 0.13–0.18 in females. There is a single anal plate, keeled dorsal scales and typically 25 midbody scale rows (range 23–27; Gloyd & Conant, 1990). Subcaudals range from 45 to 54 in males and from 41 to 49 in females, whereas ventral scales number 135–145 in males and 132–144 in females (Gloyd & Conant, 1990). Supralabials and infralabials range from 6 to 10 (mode 8) and 9 to 12 (mode 10), respectively, and total postoculars + suboculars range from 2 to 4 (mode 3; Gloyd & Conant, 1990). A combination of ge- ography and colour pattern distinguishes the Florida cottonmouth from related species. There are 11–16 dark cross-bands on an olive, brown or black background, which may become subdued in adults, whereas A. piscivorus generally has 10–17 cross-bands that often become indistinguishable from the ground colour in adults (Gloyd & Conant, 1990). The head is typically brown with vertical stripes along the snout on the rostrals, prenasals, and first supralabials (Gloyd & Conant, 1990). Dark stripes appear on the lower jaw extending from the mental to the first four or five infralabials (Gloyd & Conant, 1990). A dark cheek stripe is present bordered above and below by pale stripes and often present in adults, although it is often in- distinguishable from the ground colour in adult A. piscivorus (Gloyd & Conant, 1990; Conant & Collins, 1991). The distribution of the Florida Cottonmouth extends from southern Florida to approximately Savannah, Georgia, and west to south-eastern Alabama (Fig. 5B), whereas the Northern Cottonmouth ranges in the USA from south-eastern Virginia to central Georgia, east of the Appalachian Mountains, north to southern Illinois and eastern Kansas. Hybridization between the Florida and Northern cottonmouth occurs in the mid-Atlantic coastal plains in southern North Carolina to the southern coastal plains in south- eastern Louisiana and diagnosis may be difficult without additional morphological and molecular data for some individuals in this area (Burbrink & Guiher 2015: 522).|
Subspecies: The monophyletic Florida subspecies A. piscivorus conanti is now considered as a distinct species (at 4.8% SD), whereas two western subspecies of A. contortrix also appear to constitute a single distinct species, pending additional analyses. Both species of Agkistrodon can be used as suitable ectothermic models to gauge impacts of future climate change (DOUGLAS et al. 2009, Burbrink & Guiher 2014).
Synonymy: Burbrink & Guiher (2015) synonymized A. p. piscivorus and A. p. leucostoma into a single species, A. piscivorus. They split off A. conanti as separate species whose range completely falls into that of A. piscivorus.
|Etymology||Named after Roger Conant, American herpetologist and director of the Philadelphia Zoological Garden.|
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