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Chilabothrus subflavus (STEJNEGER, 1901)

IUCN Red List - Chilabothrus subflavus - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaBoidae (Boinae), Henophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Jamaican Boa, Jamaican (Yellow) Boa
G: Jamaika-Boa 
SynonymEpicrates subflavus STEJNEGER 1901: 469 (substitute name for Epicrates inornatus REINHARDT (part))
Epicrates subflavus — GRANT 1940: 116
Epicrates subflavus — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 611
Epicrates subflavus — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 199
Chilabothrus subflavus — REYNOLDS et al. 2013
Epicrates subflavus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 274
Chilabothrus subflavus — REYNOLDS & HENDERSON 2018: 15 
DistributionJamaica, Goat I

Type locality: Jamaica.  
TypesHolotype: USNM 14507, unsexed adult 
DiagnosisDESCRIPTION: Maximum SVL about 2000 mm; dorsal scale rows on neck 33-41, at midbody 41-47; ventrals 277-283; subcaudals 78-79; head scale formula 2-1-2. Dorsal ground color deep tan, pale reddish brown to olive; many dorsal scales black or partly so; by midbody, dorsum with irregular black banding; posterior of body and tail nearly completely black; head olivaceous; 2 narrow, black postorbital stripes; chin greenish yellow; venter orange anteriorly with occasional black spots, black spots becoming more numerous posteriorly, and posterior half of body and tail jet black; juveniles with pinkish tan dorsal ground color, pattern indistinct anteriorly, forming more or less double crossbands posteriorly, venter cream(Schwartz & Henderson 1991: 611). 
CommentFor illustrations see Schwartz and Henderson, 1985; Mehrtens, 1987; Tolson, 1987.

Habitat: partly arboreal (Harrington et al. 2018). 
  • Barbour, T. 1910. Notes on the herpetology of Jamaica. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 52: 273—301 - get paper here
  • Grant, C. 1940. The herpetology of Jamaica Il. The reptiles. Bull. Inst. Jamaica., Sci. Ser. 1: 61-148.
  • Harrington, Sean M; Jordyn M de Haan, Lindsey Shapiro, Sara Ruane 2018. Habits and characteristics of arboreal snakes worldwide: arboreality constrains body size but does not affect lineage diversification. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 125 (1): 61–71 - get paper here
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. [type catalogue] Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • Mehrtens, J.M. 1987. Living snakes of the world in color. Sterling Publ. Co., hic., New York, NY: 480 pp.
  • Newman, Brent C.; Scott E. Henke, Randy L. Powell, and D. Craig Rudolph 2020. Review of the Jamaican Boa (Chilabothrus subflavus): Biology, Ecology, and Conservation Management of a Vulnerable Species. Herpetological Conservation and Biology, 15 (2): - get paper here
  • Newman, Brent C.; Scott E. Henke, Susan E. Koenig and Randy L. Powell 2016. Distribution and General Habitat Use Analysis of the Jamaican Boa (Chilabothrus subflavus). South American J. Herp. 11 (3): 228–234 - get paper here
  • Oliver, W.L.R. 1982. The coney and the yellow snake: the distribution and status of the Jamaican hutia Geocapromys browni and the Jamaican boa Epicrates subflavus. Dodo: J. Jersey Wildl. Preserv. Trust 19:6-33.
  • O’Shea, M. 2018. The Book of Snakes. Ivy Press / Quarto Publishing, London, - get paper here
  • Reynolds, R. Graham and Robert W. Henderson 2018. Boas of the World (Superfamily Booidae): A Checklist With Systematic, Taxonomic, and Conservation Assessments. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology Sep 2018, Vol. 162, No. 1: 1-58. - get paper here
  • Reynolds, R.G.; Matthew L. Niemiller; S. Blair Hedges; Alex Dornburg; Alberto R. Puente-Rolón; Liam J. Revell 2013. Molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography of West Indian boid snakes (Chilabothrus). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution - get paper here
  • Schulz, Michaela & Marco Schulz 2010. Paarungsauslöser bei Riesenschlangen. Draco 11 (44): 18-22 - get paper here
  • Schwartz, A. & Henderson, R.W. 1988. West Indian Amphibian and Reptiles: A Checklist. Milwaukee Publ. Mus. Contr. Biol. Geol. No. 74: 264 pp. - get paper here
  • Schwartz, A. & Henderson, R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, 720 pp.
  • Schwartz, A. and Henderson, R.W. 1985. A guide to the identification of the amphibians and reptiles of the West Indies exclusive of Hispaniola. Milwaukee Public Mus., 165 pp.
  • SMITH, DWAYNE; CALVIN H. SCHAEFER & JUSTIN ELDEN. 2021. CHILABOTHRUS SUBFLAVUS (Jamaican Boa). MALE COMBAT and REPRODUCTION. Herpetological Review 52 (3): 660. - get paper here
  • Stejneger, L. 1901. A new systematic name for the yellow boa of Jamaica. Proc. US Natl. Mus. 23: 469-470. - get paper here
  • Tolson, P.J. 1987. Phylogenetics of the boid snake genus Epicrates and Caribbean vicariance theory. Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan (715): 1-68. - get paper here
  • Tzika, A.C. et al. 2008. Population structure of an endemic vulnerable species, the Jamaican boa (Epicrates subflavus). Molecular Ecology 17: 533–544 - 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.
  • Wilson, B.S. & Vogel, P. 2000. A survey of the herpetofauna of the Hellshire Hills, Jamaica, including the rediscovery of the Blue-tailed Galliwasp (Celestus duquesneyi Grant). Carib. J. Sci. 36: 244-249
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