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Calamaria acutirostris BOULENGER, 1896

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Calamariinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Pointed Snout Reed Snake 
SynonymCalamaria acutirostris BOULENGER 1896: 394
Calamaria acutirostris — MARX & INGER 1955
Calamaria acutirostris — INGER & MARX 1965: 73
Calamaria acutirostris — INGER & VORIS 2001
Calamaria acutirostris — WALLACH et al. 2014: 134 
DistributionIndonesia (SW Sulawesi)

Type locality: Loca , Mt. Bonthain, Celebes  
TypesLectotype: NMBA (Basel) 1686 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Maxillary teeth unmodified; third and fourth supralabials entering orbit; mental touching anterior chin shields; second pair of chin shields not meeting in midline (Inger & Marx 1965: 73).

Description. Rostral higher than wide or as wide as high, scarcely visible from above; prefrontal subequal to frontal, touching first 3 supralabials; frontal hexagonal, 2.75 to 3.5 times width of supraocular, about 2/3 length of parietal; parietal 1.5 times length of prefrontal; paraparietal surrounded by 6 shields and scales; nasal slightly smaller than postocular and larger than preocular; preocular present, neither ocular as high as eye; eye less than or equal to eye-mouth distance; 5 supralabials, third and fourth entering orbit, fifth the largest, first smallest, next 3 subequal; mental triangular, touching anterior chin shields; 5 infralabials, first 3 touching anterior chin shields; posterior pair of chin shields not meeting in midline; 4 gulars in midline between anterior chin shields and first ventral (Inger & Marx 1965: 73).

Body thickness index 0.013-0.070 (10 specimens); tail thick, either tapering gradually or abruptly near end to a point; dorsal scales reduce to 4 rows on tail opposite first to sixth subcaudal anterior to terminal scute.

Hemipenis forked opposite fifth to seventh subcaudal, retractor muscle beginning opposite ninth to twelfth subcaudal, sulcus bifurcate, calyces smooth (5 specimens). Cloaca of female bilobed (2) or bulbous (1).

Teeth: Ten to 12 unmodified maxillary teeth (9 specimens).

Ventrals: males, 148-162 (mean 154.6; N=18); females, 163-174 (mean 167.6; N=16). Subcaudals: males, 20-24 (mean 21.5; N=18); females, 13-17 (mean 15.2; N=16).

Total length: males, 138-415 mm.; females, 150-447 mm. Ratio of tail to total length: males, 0.086-0.111 (mean 0.094; N=17); females, 0.057-0.069 (mean 0.063; N=16).

Coloration: reddish brown above without markings; dorsal scales without network; head dark brown above; dark pigment ending on a more or less oblique line on supralabials, usually reaching lower edge of anterior supralabials; underside of head yellow with dark spots on anterior infralabials and chin shields; ventrals yellow, usually with a brownish speckling across their anterior edges; subcaudals yellow, edged with brown (Inger & Marx 1965: 73). 
EtymologyNamed after Latin “acuere” = sharp, or “acutus” = sharpened, pointed, or “acumen” = tip, or “acus” = needle; “rostrum” = beak, proboscis, or trunk. 
  • Boulenger, G. A. 1896. Descriptions of new reptiles and batrachians collected in Celebes by Drs. P. & F. Sarasin. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (6) 17: 393-395 - get paper here
  • Gemel, R.; G. Gassner & S. Schweiger 2019. Katalog der Typen der Herpetologischen Sammlung des Naturhistorischen Museums Wien – 2018. Ann. Naturhist. Mus. Wien, B 121: 33–248
  • Grismer, L. L., H. Kaiser & N. S. Yaakob 2004. A new species of Reed Snake of the genus Calamaria H. Boie, 1827, from Pulau Tioman, Pahang, West Malaysia. Hamadryad 28 (1&2): 1-6 - get paper here
  • Howard, S.D. & Gillespie, G.R. 2007. Two New Calamaria (Serpentes) Species from Sulawesi, Indonesia. Journal of Herpetology 41 (2): 237 - get paper here
  • Inger, R. F. & H. MARX 1965. The systematics and evolution of the oriental colubrid snakes of the genus Calamaria. Fieldiana: Zoology 49: 1-304. - get paper here
  • Inger, R.F. & Voris, H. K. 2001. The biogeographical relations of the frogs and snakes of Sundaland. Journal of Biogeography 28: 863-89 1
  • Koch, A. 2012. Discovery, Diversity, and Distribution of the Amphibians and Reptiles of Sulawesi and its offshore islands. Edition Chimaira, 374 pp. [ISBN 978-3-89973-432-4] - get paper here
  • Koch, A.; Arida, E.; Mcguire, J.A.; Iskandar, D.T. & Böhme, W. 2009. A new species of Calamaria (Squamata: Colubridae) similar to C. ceramensis de Rooij, 1913, from the Banggai Islands, east of Sulawesi, Indonesia. Zootaxa 2196: 19–30 - get paper here
  • Lang, Ruud de & G. Vogel 2005. The snakes of Sulawesi. A field guide to the land snakes of Sulawesi with identification keys. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurter Beiträge zur Naturkunde, 25, Frankfurt am Main, 312 pp.
  • Marx, H. & R. F. INGER 1955. Notes on the snakes of the genus Calamaria. Fieldiana: Zoology 37: 167 - 209 - get paper here
  • Wallach, Van; Kenneth L. Williams , Jeff Boundy 2014. Snakes of the World: A Catalogue of Living and Extinct Species. [type catalogue] Taylor and Francis, CRC Press, 1237 pp.
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