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Lycodryas cococola HAWLITSCHEK, NAGY & GLAW, 2012

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Higher TaxaLamprophiidae, Pseudoxyrhophiinae, Colubroidea, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
SubspeciesLycodryas cococola cococola HAWLITSCHEK, NAGY & GLAW 2012
Lycodryas cococola innocens HAWLITSCHEK, NAGY & GLAW 2012 
Common Names 
SynonymLycodryas cococola HAWLITSCHEK, NAGY & GLAW 2012
Lycodryas cococola — WALLACH et al. 2014: 399 
DistributionComoros Archipelago: Grand Comoro

Type locality: Comoros Archipelago, COMOROS,Grand Comoro, Lac Salé; volcanic rocks around lake (11.37375°S; 43.37306°E, 72 m elevation.

innocens: Comoros Archipelago: Mohéli; Type locality: Comoro Archipelago, COMOROS, Mohéli, near Ouallah (12.32706°S; 43.66918°E, 12 m elevation); on tree in degraded forest.  
TypesHolotype: ZSM 41/2010 (field number FGZC 1512); adult male; collected 13 February 2010; by O. Hawlitschek, J. Berger, B. Brückmann. Paratypes (cococola). All from Comoros Archipelago, COMOROS, Grand Comoro. ZSM 703/2000; adult female; collected February 2000; exact locality uncertain, said to be from near Chindini; by local collector. ZSM 321/2002; adult female; collected 09 April 2002; Moroni, garden of hotel ‘‘La Grillade’’; by F. Glaw, M. Hiermeier, M. Kotrba. ZSM 1679/2008; adult male; collected 25 February 2008; plantation near Mbachile ́, under stone near mango tree; by O. Hawlitschek, B. Brenzinger. BMNH 1985.338; adult male; near Moroni; by M. Pinchon. MNHN 1890-31; adult male; collected 25 January 1890; by Humblot. MNHN 1899/213; adult female; collected 1899; by Pobeguin. MNHN 1899/214; adult male; collected 1899; by Pobeguin. MNHN 1902-392; adult male; collected 1902. MNHN 1902-393; adult male; collected 1902. MNHN 1902-394; sex undetermined; collected 1902. MNHN 1902-395; sex undetermined; collected 1902. MNHN 1957-732; adult female; collected 1957. MNHN 1961-657; adult female; collected 1961; by Millot. MNHN 1978-2925; adult male; collected 1978; by Domergue, Lt. Plassant. ZFMK 45944; adult female. ZMB 19266; 3 specimens, 2 adult males, 1 adult female; coast; by Voeltzkow.

Holotype: ZSM 43/2010 (field number FGZC 1537); adult male; collected 2 March 2010; by O. Hawlitschek, J. Berger, B. Brückmann; Paratypes: All from Comoros archipelago, COMOROS, Mohéli island. ZSM 311/2002; adult female; collected 18 April 2002; East of Nioumachoua; by F. Glaw, M. Hiermeier, M. Kotrba. ZSM 312/2002; adult female; collected 20 April 2002; around Ouallah; by F. Glaw, M. Hiermeier, M. Kotrba. ZSM 43/ 2010; adult female; collected 2 March 2010; East of Ouallah; on tree in plantation area; by O. Hawlitschek, J. Berger, B. Brückmann. ZSM 45/2010; adult female; collected 30 March 2010; Lac Dziani Boundouni; on tree in degraded forest surrounding lake; by O. Hawlitschek, J. Berger, B. Brückmann. ZSM 1682/2008; adult female, gravid with 3 eggs; collected 5 March 2008; Chaleˆt St. Antoine; tree in clearing on summit near Chaleˆt; by O. Hawlitschek, B. Brenzinger. MNHN 8702; adult male; collected June 1957; by J. Millot. ZMB 19227; adult male; by A. Voeltzkow. SMF 19629; 3 specimens, all adult, 1 male, 2 females; collected 1905; by A. Voeltzkow [innocens] 
CommentSexual dimorphism: Comoran Lycodryas express strong sexual dichromatism (see Fig. 4 in HAWLITSCHEK et al. 2012). 
EtymologyEtymology (cococola): Derived from ‘‘Cocos’’, genus name of the coconut palm, and the Latin lexical suffix ‘‘-cola’’, meaning ‘‘inhabiting’’. This taxon is commonly found on and near coconut palms, as also reflected by the French vernacular name ‘‘serpent des cocotiers’’ (Coconut palm snake). The species epithet is used as an invariable noun in apposition.

Etymology (innocens): ‘‘Innocens’’, Latin adjective of identical ending in masculine, feminine and neutral gender, meaning ‘‘innocent’’. This name was given in reference to the fact that inhabitants of Mohéli are very afraid of this snake and kill many individuals although it is harmless to humans and generally non-aggressive. Although this is also true for other taxa of Comoran Lycodryas, local people seem most afraid of snakes on Mohéli. 
  • Hawlitschek O, Nagy ZT, Glaw F 2012. Island Evolution and Systematic Revision of Comoran Snakes: Why and When Subspecies Still Make Sense. PLoS One 7 (8): e42970. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0042970 - get paper here
  • Kwet, Axel 2013. Liste der im Jahr 2012 neu beschriebenen Reptilien. Terraria-Elaphe 2013 (3): 52-67 - 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.
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