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Brachyorrhos albus (LINNAEUS, 1758)

IUCN Red List - Brachyorrhos albus - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaHomalopsidae, Colubroidea, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Common NamesSeram Short-tailed Snake 
SynonymColuber albus LINNAEUS 1758: 218
Coluber brachiurus — SHAW 1802: 470 (fide DUMÉRIL et al. 1854)
Brachyorrhos albus — KUHL in SCHLEGEL 1826
Brachyorrhos albus — BOIE 1827: 519
Calamaria brachyorrhos — SCHLEGEL 1837: 33
Brachyorrhos albus — DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854: 511
Brachiorrhos albus — JAN 1865
Atractocephalus raffrayi SAUVAGE 1879: 62 (fide WILLIAMS & WALLACH)
Brachyorrhos albus var conjunctus FISCHER 1880: 226
Brachyorrhus albus [sic] — BOULENGER 1893: 305
Brachyorrhos albus — MURPHY 2012
Brachyorrhos albus — MURPHY & VORIS 2014 
DistributionIndonesia (restricted to restricted to Seram, Ambon and some island by Murphy et al. 2012)

Type locality: “Indiis” (Ambon, Indonesia)  
TypesHolotype: NRM 19 
CommentSynonymy after DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854 and MURPHY 2012. Rabdion gastrotaenia BLEEKER 1860 was resurrected from the synonymy of B. albus by MURPHY 2012.

Distribution: previously reported from Timor, Saparua, Nusa Laut, Haruku, Ambon, Buru, Halmahera, Morotai, Ternate, Aru, Jobi, Irian Jaya, but restricted by Murphy et al. 2012.

Type species: Coluber albus LINNAEUS 1758 is the type species of the genus Brachyorrhos KUHL in SCHLEGEL 1826. Note that Brachyorrhos is a substitute name for Brachura Kuhl and van Hasselt, 1822, erroneously believed to be preoccupied by Brachyurus Fischer, 1808.

Habitat: terrestrial/fossorial, occasionally arboreal. 
EtymologyNamed after Latin “albus, -a, -um” = white.

Etymology (genus). Brachyorrhos is derived from the Greek words brachy = short, and orrhos = rump or tail; the gender is masculine. 
  • Bleeker, P. 1860. Over de Reptiliën-Fauna van Amboina. Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië 22: 39-43 - get paper here
  • Boie, F. 1827. Bemerkungen über Merrem's Versuch eines Systems der Amphibien, 1. Lieferung: Ophidier. Isis van Oken 20: 508-566. - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Fischer, J. G. 1879. Neue oder wenig bekannte Reptilien. Verh. naturwiss. Ver. Hamburg N.F. III: 78-103 - get paper here
  • Fischer, J. G. 1880. Neue Reptilien und Amphibien. Archiv für Naturgeschichte 46 (1): 215-227 - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1865. Iconographie générale des ophidiens. 13. Livraison. [Homalosoma mite]. J.B. Bailière et Fils, Paris - get paper here
  • Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii, Holmiæ. 10th Edition: 824 pp. - get paper here
  • Murphy, J.C. & Voris, H.K. 2014. A Checklist and Key to the Homalopsid Snakes (Reptilia, Squamata, Serpentes), with the Description of New Genera. FIELDIANA: LIFE AND EARTH SCIENCES (8): 1–43 - get paper here
  • Murphy, John C. 2007. Homalopsid Snakes: Evolution in the Mud. Krieger Publishing, Malabar, Florida, 249 pp.
  • Murphy, John C.; Mumpuni, Kate L. Sanders 2011. First molecular evidence for the phylogenetic placement of the enigmatic snake genus Brachyorrhos(Serpentes: Caenophidia). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 61 (3): 953-957 - get paper here
  • Murphy, John C.; Mumpuni, Ruud de Lang, Dakvid J. Gower and Kate L. Sanders 2012. The Moluccan short-tailed snakes of the genus Brachyorrhos Kuhl (Squamata: Serpentes: Homalopsidae), and the status of Calamophis Meyer. John C. Murphy, Mumpuni, Ruud de Lang, Dakvid J. Gower and Kate L. Sanders. The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 60 (2): 501-514 - get paper here
  • Sauvage, H. E. 1879. Sur un Rhabdosomien de genre nouveau provenant de Ternate. Bull. Soc. philom. Paris (7) 3: 61-63 - get paper here
  • Schlegel, H. 1826. Notice sur l’Erpétologie de l’île de Java; Par M. Boïé. Bulletin des Sciences Naturelles et de Géologie, 9: 233-240. - get paper here
  • Schlegel, H. 1837. Essai sur la physionomie des serpens. Partie Descriptive. La Haye (J. Kips, J. HZ. et W. P. van Stockum), 606 S. + xvi - get paper here
  • Shaw, G. 1802. General Zoology, or Systematic Natural History. Vol.3, part 2. G. Kearsley, Thomas Davison, London: 313-615 - get paper here
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