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Dendrelaphis schokari (KUHL, 1820)

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Ahaetuliinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common Names 
SynonymDipsas schokari KUHL 1820
Dendrophis helena WERNER 1893 (fide SMITH 1943)
Dendrelaphis schokari — ROOIJEN & VOGEL 2008
Dendrelaphis schokari — WALLACH et al. 2014: 221 
DistributionSri Lanka

Type locality: Ceylon = Sri Lanka  
TypesNeotype. RMNH 842; collector: Frank, 1853 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A species of Dendrelaphis, character-ized by the combination of: (1) vertebral scales en-larged but smaller than the dorsals of the fi rst row; (2) 155-177 ventrals; (3) 105-127 divided subcaudals; (4) 15 dorsal scale rows at midbody; (5) anal shield di- vided; (6) 1 loreal scale; (7) 2 supralabials touching the eye; (8) a short fi rst sublabial that touches 2 infralabials; (9) 4 to 7 temporal scales; (10) 2 to 3 postoculars; (11) maximum total length 119.0 cm; (12) TAIL/TL 0.30-0.34; (13) an interparietal spot is absent (rarely rudimentarily present); (14) the presence of a light ventrolateral stripe; (15) the presence, in most specimens, of a vertebral stripe. 
CommentBehavior: diurnal

Distribution: Populations from the Western Ghats have been revalidated as Dendrelaphis chairecaeos Boie, 1827. Hence D. schokari is no longer present in India.

Habitat: fully arboreal (Harrington et al. 2018) 
  • Blackburn, D.G. 1993. STANDARDIZED CRITERIA FOR THE RECOGNITION OF REPRODUCTIVE MODES IN SQUAMATE REPTILES. Herpetologica 49 (1): 118-132 - get paper here
  • De Zoysa, H. K. S., D. P. Samarasinghe and S. Wickramasinghe. 2015. Dendrelaphis schokari (Schokar's bronzeback) predation. Herpetological Review 46 (4): 642-643 - get paper here
  • 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
  • Karunarathna, Suranjan D. M. S. and A. A. Thasun Amarasinghe 2011. A PRELIMINARY SURVEY OF THE REPTILE FAUNA IN NILGALA FOREST AND ITS VICINITY, MONARAGALA DISTRICT, SRI LANKA. Taprobanica 3 (2): 69-76 - get paper here
  • Kuhl,H. 1820. Beiträge zur Zoologie und vergleichenden Anatomie. Hermannsche Buchhandlung, Frankfurt, 152 pp. - get paper here
  • Rooijen, J. van & Vogel, G. 2008. An investigation into the taxonomy of Dendrelaphis tristis (Daudin, 1803): revalidation of Dipsas schokari (Kuhl, 1820) (Serpentes, Colubridae). Contributions to Zoology, 77 (1) 33-43 (2008) - get paper here
  • Rooijen, J. van & Vogel, G. 2009. A multivariate investigation into the population systematics of Dendrelaphis tristis (Daudin, 1803) and Dendrelaphis schokari (Kuhl, 1820): revalidation of Dendrophis chairecacos Boie, 1827 (Serpentes: Colubridae). The Herpetological Journal 19: 193-200 - get paper here
  • Smith, M.A. 1943. The Fauna of British India, Ceylon and Burma, Including the Whole of the Indo-Chinese Sub-Region. Reptilia and Amphibia. 3 (Serpentes). Taylor and Francis, London. 583 pp.
  • 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.
  • Werner, Franz 1893. Herpetologische Nova (1). Zool. Anz. 16 (414): 81-84 - get paper here
  • WICKRAMASINGHE, L.J. MENDIS 2016. A new canopy-dwelling species of Dendrelaphis (Serpentes: Colubridae) from Sinharaja, World Heritage Site, Sri Lanka. Zootaxa 4162 (3): 504–518 - get paper here
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