You are here » home advanced search Hydrophis pachycercos

Hydrophis pachycercos FISCHER, 1855

IUCN Red List - Hydrophis pachycercos - Data Deficient, DD

Can you confirm these amateur observations of Hydrophis pachycercos?

Add your own observation of
Hydrophis pachycercos »

Find more photos by Google images search: Google images

Higher TaxaElapidae (Hydrophiinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common Names 
SynonymHydrophis pachycercos FISCHER 1855
Hydrophis pachycercos FISCHER 1856: 44
Hydrophis pachycerios — JAN 1859 (in error)
Hydrophis pachycercos — RASMUSSEN et al. 2007
Hydrophis pachycercos — RASMUSSEN et al. 2011
Chitulia pachycercos — WALLACH et al. 2014: 166 
DistributionIndian Ocean, South Chinese Sea, Vietnam

Neotype locality: obtained from a fish market at Phat Thien, Vietnam.  
TypesNeotype. ZMUC R 661230, adult female, designated by Rasmussen et al. 2007.
Holotype: ZMH 390, fide Smith (1926), missing fide KHARIN & HALLERMANN 2009 
CommentSynonymy: Hydrophis pachycercos has been previously synonymized with H. belcheri but revalidated by RASMUSSEN et al. (2007).

Habitat: marine.


Diagnostic characters: Scale rows around neck 26–31; scale rows around body 3–45; ventrals 247–27. Maxillary teeth behind fangs 7–8. Colouration: Body pale yellow above, white below, with pale brown transverse bands fading on the upper part of the flanks. Head white below, black/dark above with pale supralabials and a pale ring around the eyes. 
EtymologyNamed after Greek: Pachy = thick and cercos = hale. The species name pachycercos has been latified by Günther (1864) and followed by later authors. However, following the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature §31.3.2,: a name which is not originally a Latin name can keep its original spelling. Rasmussen et al. 2007 therefore prefer to keep the name pachycercos instead of the later used name pachycercus. 
  • Fischer, J. G. 1855. Die Familie der Seeschlangen systematisch beschrieben von J.G. Fischer Dr., ordentl. Lehrer der Realschule des Johanneums. In: Zu der öffentlichen Prüfung, welche mit den Zöglingen der Realschule Dienstag und Mittwoch , den 25. und 26. September 1855 Hamburg Johann August Meissner, 68 pp.
  • Fischer, J.G. 1856. Die Familie der Seeschlangen. Abhandl. Nat. Ver. Hamburg 3: 1-78 - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1859. Plan d'une iconographie descriptive des ophidiens et description sommaire de nouvelles espèces de serpents. Rev. Mag. Zool., Paris (2) (11-12): 122-130 - get paper here
  • Kharin, Vladimir E.; Jakob Hallermann 2009. Annotated catalogue of sea kraits (Laticaudidae) and sea snakes (Hydrophiidae) of the herpetological collection of the Zoological Museum, University of Hamburg. Mitt. hamb. zool. Mus. Inst. 106: 51-67
  • RASMUSSEN, ARNE REDSTED; JOHAN ELMBERG, PETER GRAVLUND & IVAN INEICH 2011. Sea snakes (Serpentes: subfamilies Hydrophiinae and Laticaudinae) in Vietnam: a comprehensive checklist and an updated identification key. Zootaxa 2894: 1–20 - get paper here
  • Rasmussen,A.R., Gravlund, P.; Nguyen, C. van; Chanhome, L. 2007. A resurrection of Hydrophis pachycercos Fischer 1855 (Serpentes: Elapidae) with a new neotype from the South China sea. Hamadryad 31 (2): 288-298 - get paper here
  • 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.
External links  
Is it interesting? Share with others:

Please submit feedback about this entry to the curator