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Demansia psammophis (SCHLEGEL, 1837)

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Higher TaxaElapidae (Hydrophiinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Yellow-faced Whipsnake, Yellow-Faced Whip Snake 
SynonymElaps psammophis SCHLEGEL 1837: 455
Pseudelaps psammophidius DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854: 1234 (nom. nov.)
Diemenia psammophis BOULENGER 1896
Demansia psammophis psammophis — ORANGE 1994
Demansia psammophis psammophis — WELCH 1994: 53
Demansia psammophis — COGGER 2000: 641
Demansia psammophis — WALLACH et al. 2014: 214 
DistributionAustralia (SE Western Australia east through the Great Victoria Desert to E Australia)

Type locality: Australia  
TypesSyntypes: MNHN-RA 7663A and MNHN-RA 7666 
CommentSynonymy: WALLACH et al. 2014 list Demansia psammophis cupreiceps (STORR 1978) as a synonym of D. reticulata. Some recent authors argue that cupreiceps should be a subspecies of reticulata but the issue is not conclusively settled (G. Shea, pers. comm., 19 Nov 2019).

Subspecies: Demansia psammophis reticulata (GRAY, 1842) is now treated as valid species.

EtymologyNamed after Greek ψαμμο (psammo) = "sand" + Classical Greek ὄϕις (ophis) = "snake", thus sand-snake. 
  • Aplin, K.P. and L.A. Smith 2001. Checklist of the frogs and reptiles of Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement No. 63: 51–74 - get paper here
  • Bowles, F.D. 2000. A short note on the herpetofauna of Brisbane and its suburbs. Herpetological Bulletin (73): 27-29 - get paper here
  • Bush, B. & Maryan, B. 2006. Snakes and Snake-like Reptiles of Southern Western Australia. Snakes Harmful & Harmless, Stoneville, Perth, Western Australia, 40 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Covacevich, J. & C. Limpus 1972. Observations on Community Egg-Laying by the Yellow-Faced Whip Snake, Demansia psammophis (Schlegel) 1837 (Squamata: Elapidae) Herpetologica 28 (3): 208-210. - get paper here
  • de Rooij, N. DE 1917. The Reptiles of the Indo-Australian Archipelago. Il. Ophidia. Leiden (E. J. Brill), xiv + 334 S. - get paper here
  • Dittmer, D. E., Chapman, T. L. & Bidwell, J. R. 2020. In the shadow of an iconic inselberg: Uluru’s shadow influences climates and reptile assemblage structure at its base. J. Arid Environ. 181, 104179 (2020) - get paper here
  • Duméril, A. M. C., Bibron, G. & DUMÉRIL, A. H. A., 1854. Erpétologie générale ou histoire naturelle complète des reptiles. Tome septième. Deuxième partie, comprenant l'histoire des serpents venimeux. Paris, Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret: i-xii + 781-1536 - get paper here
  • Gray, J. E. 1842. Description of some hitherto unrecorded species of Australian reptiles and batrachians. Zoological Miscellany 2: 51—57 (London: Treuttel, Würtz & Co) - get paper here
  • Guibé, J. & Roux-Estève, R. 1972. Les types de Schlegel (Ophidiens) présents dans les collections du Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle de Paris. Zoologische Mededelingen 47: 129-134 - get paper here
  • Kay, G.M.; D. Michael; M. Crane; S. Okada; C. MacGregor; D. Florance; D. Trengove; L. McBurney; D. Blair; D.B. Lindenmayer. 2013. A list of reptiles and amphibians from Box Gum Grassy Woodlands in south-eastern Australia. Check List 9 (3):476-481 - get paper here
  • Michael, D.R.; D.B. Lindenmayer; M. Crane; C. MacGregor; R. Montague-Drake; L. McBurney. 2011. Reptilia, Murray catchment, New South Wales, southeastern Australia. Check List 7 (1):25-29 - get paper here
  • NORVAL, GERRUT; ROBERT D. SHARRAD & MICHAEL G. GARDNER. 2021. DEMANSIA PSAMMOPHIS (Yellow-faced Whip Snake), NOTECHIS SCUTATUS (Tiger Snake), POGONA BARBATA (Eastern Bearded Dragon). ECTOPARASITES. Herpetological Review 52 (2): 421–422. - get paper here
  • Orange P 1994. A note regarding colour change in Demansia psammophis psammophis (Serpentes: Elapidae). Herpetofauna (Sydney) 24 (2): 41
  • O’Shea, M. 2018. The Book of Snakes. Ivy Press / Quarto Publishing, London, - 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
  • Schwaner T D; Miller B 1984. Range extensions of reptiles in South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 108 (3-4): 215-216 - get paper here
  • Shea, G.M. & Scanlon 2007. Revision of the small tropical whipsnakes previously referred to Demansia olivacea (Gray, 1842) and Demansia torquata (Guenther, 1862) (Squamata: Elapidae). Rec. Austral. Mus. 59 (2-3): 117-142 - get paper here
  • Shine, R. 1980. Ecology of eastern Australian whipsnakes of the genus Demansia. Journal of Herpetology 14 (4): 381-389 - get paper here
  • Storr G M 1978. Whip snakes (Demansia, Elapidae) of Western Australia. Rec. West. Aust. Mus. 6 (3): 287-301 - get paper here
  • Swan, G.; Sadlier, R.; Shea, G. 2017. A field guide to reptiles of New South Wales. Reed New Holland, 328 pp.
  • Ukuwela, K.D.B., de Silva, A., Sivaruban, A. et al. 2022. Diversity, distribution, and natural history of the marine snakes of Sri Lanka. Marine Biodiversity 52, 24 (2022) - 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, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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