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Antillotyphlops hypomethes (HEDGES & THOMAS, 1991)

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Higher TaxaTyphlopidae (Typhlopinae), Typhlopoidea, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Common NamesPuerto Rican Coastal Blindsnake 
SynonymTyphlops hypomethes HEDGES & THOMAS 1991: 452
Typhlops hypomethes — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 104
Typhlops hypomethes — KORNILIOS et al. 2013
Antillotyphlops hypomethes — HEDGES et al. 2014
Typhlops hypomethes — PYRON & WALLACH 2014
Antillotyphlops hypomethes — NAGY et al. 2015 
DistributionPuerto Rico Bank

Type locality: "University of Puerto Rico Campus (faculty housing), Rio Piedras, San Juan, Puerto Rico"  
TypesHolotype: USNM 300574 
CommentType species: Typhlops hypomethes HEDGES & THOMAS 1991: 452 is the type species of the genus Antillotyphlops HEDGES et al. 2014: 44.

Synonymy: Antillotyphlops has been synonymized (back) with Typlops. Nevertheless, Nagy et al. (2015) re-analyzed and confirmed the validity of Antillotyphlops as monophyletic.

Diagnosis (genus). Species of Antillotyphlops have (1) eye, distinct, (2) snout, rounded (rarely acuminate), (3) head scale arrangement, non-circular, (4) frontorostral, absent, (5) nasal, completely divided, (6) nasal suture origin, supralabial 2, (7) suboculars or subpreoculars, absent, (8) postoculars, 2 (rarely 1; average 2.0), (9) preocular-la- bial contact, supralabial 3, (10) midbody scale rows, 16–24 (average, 20.5), (11) scale row reduction, present, (12) total scale rows, 299–499 (average, 378), (13) caudals, 11–14 (average, 12.3), (14) maximum total length, 110–360 (average, 233) mm, (15) total length/midbody diameter, 37–70 (average, 46.8), (16) total length/tail length, 30–61 (average, 44.5), (17) dorsal color, brown, grayish-brown, or yellow, (18) ventral color, white or cream (rarely brown), (19) dorsum darker than venter, and (20) overall, lacking any distinctive pattern (spots, lines, or stripes), although rarely faint trace of lines (Tables 1–2); molecular phylogenetic support (Figs. 1, 3).
Antillotyphlops is distinguished from Cubatyphlops by the presence of 2 postoculars (versus 1) and preoc- ular contact with supralabial 3 only (versus contact with supralabials 2 and 3 in Cubatyphlops). The same distinc- tion holds for Antillotyphlops versus the more distantly related Amerotyphlops, although 4 species of that genus have more than 1 postocular (Thomas 1968; 1976; Dixon & Hendricks 1979; Thomas & Hedges 2007). A closer comparison is needed between Antillotyphlops and Typhlops. With a cladistic analysis of morphological characters, Thomas (1989) found that species placed here in the genus Antillotyphlops (A. dominicana, A. granti, A. monensis, and A. richardi) formed a group based on the sharing of attenuate hemipenes, although he included Typhlops sulcatus in that group and placed A. monastus in a separate group with T. jamaicensis (hemipene data are not avail- able for some species). Also, Antillotyphlops have more total scale rows than Typhlops (378 versus 312; averages) and are thinner-bodied (TL/MBD = 46.8 versus 35.9; averages) [HEDGES et al. 2014: 44]. 
EtymologyNamed after the Greek promethes (= forethinking) and epimethes (= afterthinking) to mean below thinking, a double allusion to having been passed over (not thought about) and to the occurrence of the topo-typical population on a university campus.

The generic name is a masculine noun formed from the adjective antilleus (a, um; ‘from the Antilles’) and Greek noun typhlops (the blind). 
  • Hedges, S. B. and R. Thomas. 1991. Cryptic species of snakes (Typhlopidae: Typhlops) from the Puerto Rico Bank detected by protein electrophoresis. Herpetologica 47: 448-459. - get paper here
  • Hedges, S.B., Marion, A.B., Lipp, K.M., Marin, J. & Vidal, N. 2014. A taxonomic framework for typhlopid snakes from the Caribbean and other regions (Reptilia, Squamata). Caribbean Herpetology 49: 1–61 - get paper here
  • Kornilios, P.; S. Giokas, P. Lymberakis, R. Sindaco 2013. Phylogenetic position, origin and biogeography of Palearctic and Socotran blind-snakes (Serpentes: Typhlopidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 68 (1): 35–41 - get paper here
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • NAGY, ZOLTÁN T.; ANGELA B. MARION, FRANK GLAW, AURÉLIEN MIRALLES,<br />JOACHIM NOPPER, MIGUEL VENCES & S. BLAIR HEDGES 2015. Molecular systematics and undescribed diversity of Madagascan scolecophidian snakes (Squamata: Serpentes) Zootaxa 4040 (1): 031–047 - get paper here
  • Pyron, R.A. & Wallach, V. 2014. Systematics of the blindsnakes (Serpentes: Scolecophidia: Typhlopoidea) based on molecular and morphological evidence. Zootaxa 3829 (1): 001–081
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