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Lampropeltis polyzona COPE, 1860

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Lampropeltini, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Subspecies 
Common NamesAtlantic Central American Milksnake
nelsoni: G: Nelsons Dreiecksnatter 
SynonymLampropeltis polyzona COPE 1860: 258
Coronella micropholis var. arcifera WERNER 1903: 250
Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni BLANCHARD 1920
Lampropeltis polyzona polyzona — STUART 1935: 50
Lampropeltis triangulum schmidti STUART 1935: 1
Lampropeltis triangulum arcifera — SMITH 1942: 198 (part.)
Lampropeltis triangulum polyzona — SMITH 1945: 200
Lampropeltis doliatus schmidti — KLAUBER 1948: 11
Lampropeltis triangulum polyzona — TAYLOR 1949: 202
Lampropeltis triangulum arcifera — TAYLOR 1949: 201
Lampropeltis triangulum arcifera — LAURENT 1949: 9
Lampropeltis doliata polyzona — MERTENS 1952: 65
Lampropeltis triangulum arcifera — DAVIS & SMITH 1953
Lampropeltis doliata nelsoni — ZWEIFEL & NORRIS 1955
Lampropeltis triangulum polyzona — PETERS & OREJAS-MIRANDA 1970: 139
Lampropeltis arcifera — ENGELMANN & OBST 1981: 93
Lampropeltis triangulum sinaloae WILLIAMS 1978
Lampropeltis triangulum smithi WILLIAMS 1978
Lampropeltis triangulum conanti WILLIAMS 1978: 189
Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli QUINN 1983
Lampropeltis triangulum sinaloae — WEBB 1984
Lampropeltis triangulum sinaloae — TANNER 1985: 634
Lampropeltis triangulum sinaloae — WILLIAMS 1994
Lampropeltis triangulum arcifera — WILLIAMS 1994
Lampropeltis polyzona — SHINE 1994
Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni — WILLIAMS 1994
Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni — HALLMEN 2005
Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli — SCHMIDT & KUNZ 2005
Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli — MATTISON 2007: 144
Lampropeltis triangulum sinaloae — MENSE 2010
Lampropeltis triangulum polyzona — LANGNER 2014
Lampropeltis polyzona — RUANE et al. 2014
Lampropeltis polyzona — JOHNSON et al. 2017 
DistributionMexico (Colima, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Puebla, Michoacán, Oaxaca, Sinaloa, Sonora, Veracruz; possibly in Guanajuato, Morelos, and Nayarit, W San Luis Potosí)

formerly recognized subspecies of L. triangulum:

arcifera: Mexico (Morelos, Guerrero, Michoacán, Jalisco, W Querétaro); Type locality: “Mexico”, restricted to “Necaxa, Puebla” by Smith & Taylor 1950, but restriction considered incorrect by Williams 1978: 180.

campbelli: Mexico (S Puebla, E Morelos, N Oaxaca); Type locality: "4.8 km S Zapotitlan, Puebla, Mexico, elevation 1680 m."

conanti: Mexico (Sierra Madre del Sur in Guerrero, Oaxaca); Type locality: vic. Chilpancingo, Sierra Madre del Sur in Guerrero.

nelsoni: Mexico (S Guanjuato, C Jalisco, Colima, NW Michoacán, Tres Marias, Sonora). Type locality: "Acambaro,Guanajuato, Mexico."

polyzona: Mexico (Vera Cruz, E San Luis Potosí, Tabasco); Type locality: Mexico, Veracruz, Cuatupe, nr. Jalapa.

sinaloae: Mexico (SW Sonora, Sinaloa, SW Chihuahua); Type locality: "32.4 miles north of Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico."

smithi: Mexico (SE San Luis Potosí, E Querétaro, Hidalgo, NE Puebla, Veracruz); Type locality: "the Xilitla region, San Luis Potosi, Mexico."  
Reproductionoviparous. 
TypesHolotype: ANSP 9770 (polyzona)
Holotype: Institute Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique 9.422, adult female [arcifera]
Holotype: UTAM 4822, juvenile male [campbelli]
Holotype: UMMZ 85762, adult male [conanti]
Holotype: USNM 46552, adult male [nelsoni]
Holotype: ANSP 9770, adult male [polyzona]
Holotype: LACM 38529, adult female [sinaloae]
Holotype: LSUMZ 274, adult male [smithi] 
CommentSynonymy after PETERS & OREJAS-MIRANDA 1970, WILLIAMS 1994, and RUANE et al. 2014 (who synonymized L. polyzona, L. t. arcifera, L. t. conanti, L. t. campbelli, L. t. nelsoni, L. t. smithi, and L. t. sinaloae). Listed as synonym of Lampropeltis triangulum by WALLACH et al. 2014: 359.

Illustrations: L. t. sinaloae is on the title page of Elaphe 3/95. Illustration of L.t. campbelli and L.t.hondurensis in SCHMIDT (2004).

Distribution: Not listed for San Luis Potosí by Lemos-Espinal & Dixon 2013. L. polyzona s. str. is restricted to Mexico fide JOHNSON et al. 2017. reports from Belize and El Salvador (Mertens 1952) represent other species. 
EtymologyThe name polyzona is formed from the Greek polys meaning "many," and the Greek zone, meaning "a belt or girdle," apparently in reference to the high number of rings or bands typical of this subspecies.

The name arcifera is formed from the Latin arcus, meaning "arch," and the Latin -fer, meaning "to bear," apparently referring to the arch-like effect on the lateral aspects of the body caused by the black pigment crossing the red rings middorsally.

The name nelsoni is a patronym honoring W.W. Nelson, collector of the type, as well as many other important specimens from Mexico.

The name sinaloae is for the Mexican state of Sinaloa, which encompasses the major portion of the range of this form.

The name campbelli is a patronym honoring Jonathan A.Campbell,collector of most of the type series of this subspecies and "an ardent and competent field biologist." 
References
  • Blanchard, Frank N. 1920. Three new snakes of the genus Lampropeltis. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan (81): 1-10 - get paper here
  • Blanchard, Frank N. 1920. A synopsis of the king snakes: Genus Lampropeltis Fitzinger. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan (87): 1-7 - get paper here
  • Cope, E.D. 1860. Catalogue of the Colubridae in the Museum of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, with notes and descriptions of new species. Part II. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 12: 241-266 - get paper here
  • Davis, William B.; Smith, Hobart M. 1953. Snakes of the Mexican state of Morelos. Herpetologica 8: 133-149 - get paper here
  • Engelmann, W.-E. and F. J. Obst 1981. Snake biology, behavior and relationship to man. Exeter Books, New York.
  • Hallmen, M. 2005. Farb- und Zeichnungszuchten in der Terraristik. Reptilia (Münster) 10 (55): 16-22 - get paper here
  • Heimes, P. 2016. Snakes of Mexico. Chimaira, Frankfurt, 572 pp
  • Johnson, J. D., L. D. Wilson, V. Mata-Silva, E. García-Padilla, and D. L. DeSantis. 2017. The endemic herpetofauna of Mexico: organisms of global significance in severe peril. Mesoamerican Herpetology 4(3): 544–620
  • Klauber, Lawrence M. 1948. Some misapplications of the Linnaean names applied to American snakes. Copeia 1948 (1): 1-14 - get paper here
  • Langner, Christian 2014. Herpetologische Beobachtungen im Lebensraum von Abronia deppii im Valle de Bravo, Estado de México, Mexiko. Terraria-Elaphe 2014 (2): 46-55
  • Laurent, R. 1949. Note sur quelques reptiles appartenant à la collection de l'Institut Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique. III. Formes americaines. Bull. Inst. roy. Sci. nat. Belgique, Bruxelles, 25 (9): 1-20 [4]
  • Leyte-Manrique, A., V. Mata-Silva and R. W. Hansen. 2017. New records for Lampropeltis polyzona Cope, 1860 (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubridae), from Guanajuato, Mexico. Mesoamerican Herpetology 4(2): 463–464 - get paper here
  • Mata-Silva, Vicente, Jerry D. Johnson, Larry David Wilson and Elí García-Padilla. 2015. The herpetofauna of Oaxaca, Mexico: composition, physiographic distribution, and conservation status. Mesoamerican Herpetology 2 (1): 6–62 - get paper here
  • Mattison, Chris 2007. The New Encyclopedia of Snakes. Princeton University Press
  • Mense, Mark 2010. Welche Schlange für mich?. Reptilia (Münster) 15 (86): 51-56 - get paper here
  • Mertens, R. 1952. Die Amphibien und Reptilien von El Salvador. Abh. senckenb. naturf. Ges. (Frankfurt) (No. 487): 120 pp.
  • Peters, James A.; Donoso-Barros, Roberto & Orejas-Miranda, Braulio 1970. Catalogue of the Neotropical Squamata: Part I Snakes. Part II Lizards and Amphisbaenians. Bull. US Natl. Mus. 297: 347 pp. - get paper here
  • Quinn, H. R. 1983. Two new subspecies of Lampropeltis triangulum from México. Trans. Kansas Acad. Sci. 86: 113-135. - get paper here
  • Quintero-Diaz, Gustavo, Sergio Rojas-Quezada and Rubén A. Carbajal-Márquez. 2014. Geographical Distribution: Lampropeltis polyzona (Mexican milksnake). Herpetological Review 45 (4): 664
  • Rodríguez-Canseco, Jesús Mauricio, Krystal Lucía González-Estupiñan, José Villarreal-Méndez, Leticia Ontiveros Esqueda and Andrea Bombela Cruz. 2015. Lampropeltis polyzona (milksnake) predation. Herpetological Review 46 (3): 452
  • Ruane, Sara; Robert W. Bryson, Jr., R. Alexander Pyron, and Frank T. Burbrink 2014. Coalescent Species Delimitation in Milksnakes (genus Lampropeltis) and Impacts on Phylogenetic Comparative Analyses. Systematic Biology 63 (2): 231-250, doi:10.1093/sysbio/syt099 - get paper here
  • Schmidt, D. 2015. Nattern. Arten und Tipps für Einsteiger Reptilia (Münster) 20 (115): 28-41 - get paper here
  • Schmidt, D. & Kunz, K. 2005. Ernährung von Schlangen. Natur und Tier Verlag, Münster, 159 pp. - get paper here
  • Shine, Richard 1994. Sexual size dimorphism in snakes revisited. Copeia 1994 (2): 326-346 - get paper here
  • Smith, Hobart M. 1942. Remarks on the Mexican king snakes of the triangulum group. Proc. Rochester Academy of Science 8 (4): 196-207
  • Stuart, L. C. 1935. A contribution to a knowledge of the herpetology of a portion of the savanna region of Central Peten, Guatemala. University of Michigan Museum of Zoology Miscellaneous Publications 29: 1-56 - get paper here
  • Stuart, L. C. 1935. Studies on neotropical colubrinae. V. A new snake of the genus Lampropeltis from Yucatan. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan (309): 1-6
  • Tanner, Wilmer W. 1985. Snakes of Western Chihuahua. Great Basin Naturalist 45 (4): 615-676 - get paper here
  • Taylor,E.H. 1949. A preliminary account of the herpetology of the state of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. Univ. Kansas Sci. Bull. 33 (2): 169-215 - get paper here
  • Webb, R.G. 1984. Herpetogeography in the Mazatlán-Durango Region of the Sierra Madre Occidental, Mexico. Vetrebrate Ecology and Systematics - A ribute to Henry S. Fitch; Museum of Natural History, University of Kansas, Lawrence, pp. 217-241
  • Werner, F. 1903. Neue Reptilien und Batrachier aus dem naturhistorischen Museum in Brüssel. Zool. Anz. 26: 246-253 - get paper here
  • Williams K L 1994. Lampropeltis triangulum (Lacepede), milk snake. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles 594: 1-10 - get paper here
  • Williams, K. L. 1988. Systematics and natural history of the American milk snake Lampropeltis triangulum. Milwaukee Publ. Mus. Publ. Biol. Geol. No. 2, 258 pp. - get paper here
  • Zweifel,R.G. and Norris,K.S. 1955. Contributions to the herpetology of Sonora, Mexico:Descriptions of new subspecies of snakes (Micruroides euryxanthus and Lampropeltis getulus) and miscellaneous collecting notes. American Midland Naturalist 54: 230-249 - get paper here
 
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