Hydrophis major (SHAW, 1802)
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|Higher Taxa||Elapidae (Hydrophiinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)|
|Common Names||E: Olive-headed or greater seasnake|
|Synonym||Hydrus major SHAW 1802: 558 (part.)|
Disteira doliata LACÉPÈDE 1804: 199
Pelamis shavii MERREM 1820: 139 (nom. subst. pro Hydrus major)
Hydrophis mentalis GRAY 1842: 62
Disteira doliata — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1854: 1331
Disteira dumerilii JAN 1859: 149
Hydrophis lacepedei JAN 1859
Disteira major BOULENGER 1896
Distira nasalis DE VIS 1905: 48
Hydrophis major — SMITH 1974: 103
Disteira major — COGGER 1983: 245
Disteira major — WELCH 1994: 55
Hydrophis major — RASMUSSEN 1997: 22
Disteira major — COGGER 2000: 707
Hydrophis major — BAUER & SADLIER 2000
Disteira major — KHARIN 2005
Disteira major — WILSON & SWAN 2010: 524
Hydrophis major — SANDERS et al. 2012
Disteira major — WALLACH et al. 2014: 240
|Distribution||Indian Ocean, S Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia, Australia (New South Wales?, Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia)|
Type locality: Indian Ocean (as Indian Seas); designated by COGGER 1983.
|Types||Lectotype: BMNH 19188.8.131.52; for the identity of paralectotype see Astrotia stokesii.|
Holotype: lost (presumed), from Australia [Disteira doliata].
Holotype: BMNH 1946. 1. 9. 24, from Indian Ocean [Hydrophis mentalis].
Holotype: MNHP 7705, from Australia [Disteira dumerilii].
Holotype: QM J203, from Qld. coast [Distira nasalis].
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis. Maxillare teeth II + 3 – 9, palatinum 8 – 9, pterygoideum 14 – 27, dentale 20 – 22. Diameter of the eye about equal its distance from the mouth. 1 pre- ocular, 1 – 2 postoculars and 2 anterior temporals. 7 – 8 supralabials: third and fourth touching the eye. 8 – 9 in- fralabials: the first pair partly, sometimes almost completely, separating the anterior pair of supralinguals. Posterior pair supralinguals ill-developed or almost. An- terior chin shields not or scarcely contacting the mental groove, from which they are largely separated by the elongated first infralabials. A series of small cuneates at the oral margin after the third infralabial. Scale rows around neck 30 – 36, scale rows around midbody 37 – 45. The scale imbricate and keeled throughout, strongly keeled in adults. Ventrals 210 – 270. Preanals considerably enlarged. [KHARIN 2009]|
See also description in Smith 1974.
Synonymy after COGGER 1983.
Type species: Disteira doliata Lacépède, 1804 is the type species of the genus Disteira Lacépède, 1804. Disteira is also the type genus of the tribe Disteirini KHARIN 2009.
Burger and Natsuno (1974) included Disteira (sensu McDowell, 1972) in Hydrophis, arguing that the shape of the venom gland muscle did not differ enough to justify placing them in separate genera. Soon after, Cogger (1975) resurrected the genera Enhydrina, Astrotia and Disteira, assigning Hydrophis nigrocinctus, H. hendersoni, and H. walli to the latter. Cogger (1975) further opposed Burger and Natsuno by arguing that the morphological characters separating the three latter genera were too pronounced to include all the species in one genus [from RASMUSSEN et al. 20].
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