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Atractus altagratiae PASSOS & FERNANDES, 2008

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymAtractus altagratiae PASSOS & FERNANDES 2008
Atractus altagratiae — WALLACH et al. 2014: 68 
DistributionN Brazil (C Amazon)

Type locality: upper Cururú River (07°12’S, 58°04’W; ca. 44 m elevation), tributary of Teles Pires River, Municipality of Itaituba, State of Pará, Brazil. Map legend:
Type locality - Type locality.
 
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype: MNRJ 7888, adult male, Museu Nacional, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, collected 1957 by Helmut Sick. 
CommentOn the basis of hemipenial morphology Atractus altagratiae appears to be a close relative of A. insipidus, A. pantostictus, A. punctiventris, and A. ronnie. These species share a slightly bilobed, barely semicapitate, and semicalyculate hemipenis, most of them having intrasulcular alary spines, a basal depression, and lateral projection on the lobes (Passos, 2008).

Diagnosis: The single known male of Atractus altagratiae is distinguished from all congeners by the following combination of characters: (1) 17/17/17 dorsal scale rows, smooth, without apical pits, supranal tubercles, or keels; (2) two postoculars; (3) long loreal; (4) temporals 1+2; (5) seven supralabials, third and fourth contacting orbit; (6) seven infralabials, first four in contact with chinshields; (7) seven maxillary teeth; (8) three gular scale rows; (9) three preventrals; (10) 139 ventrals; (11) 27 subcaudals; (12) dorsal colour pattern uniform reddish brown, except the first two dorsal rows creamish white; (13) venter immaculate creamish white; (14) snout-vent length of 240 mm; (15) moderate tail size (14.6% of SVL); (16) slightly bilobed, barely semicapitate, and semicalyculate hemipenis. Differs from all congeners except A. dunni, A. lasallei, A. lhemanni, and A. resplesdens in having 17 dorsal scale rows, seven supralabials, two postoculars, and dorsal colour pattern uniform reddish brown. Atractus altagratiae differs from these species in having the first two dorsal scale rows uniform creamish white, venter immaculate creamish white, and hemipenis slightly bilobed with lateral tip projections (vs. first dorsal scale rows reddish brown, venter deeply dark pigmented, and hemipenis moderate bilobed, lacking lateral projections).
Regarding other Amazonian species of Atractus, the new species differs from Atractus albuquerquei, A. boettgeri, A. charitoae, A. emmeli, A. elaps, A. franciscopaivai, A. heliobelliomini, A. insipidus, A. occipitoalbus, A. paravertebralis, A. poeppigui, A. punctiventris, A. taeniatus, A. tamessari, and A. trilineatus in having 17 dorsal scale rows (vs. 15 dorsal scale rows); from A. alphonsehogei, A. arangoi, A. badius, A. collaris, A. davidhardi, A. emersoni, A. favae, A. gaigeae, A. flammigerus, A. janethae, A. latifrons, A. limitaneus, A. lucilae, A. major, A, natans, A. schach, A. snethlageae, A. torquatus, A. univittatus, and A. zidoki in having a uniform reddish brown dorsal colour pattern, except for first two dorsal scale rows which are creamish white (vs. dorsal colour pattern with alternating black, red or white dorsal strikes, bands, blotches, and dots or with pale occipital band and vertebral line); from A. caxiuana in lacking a pale occipital band, apical pits, and supranal tubercles; from A. natans in having an immaculate creamish white venter (vs. darkly pigmented). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet “altagratiae” honours Altagratia Chiesse for her extensive help rendering many Atractus illustrations and supporting the senior author during his doctorate studies. 
References
  • Passos, P. 2008. Revisão taxonômica do gênero Atractus Wagler, 1828 (Serpentes: Colubridae: Dipsadinae). PhD Thesis, Museu Nacional, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 671 pp. - get paper here
  • Passos, P. & Fernandes, R. 2008. A new species of the colubrid snake genus Atractus (Reptilia: Serpentes) from the central Amazon of Brazil. Zootaxa 1849: 59–66 - get paper here
  • Wallach, Van; Kenneth L. Williams , Jeff Boundy 2014. Snakes of the World: A Catalogue of Living and Extinct Species. Taylor and Francis, CRC Press, 1237 pp.
 
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