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Micrurus margaritiferus ROZE, 1967

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Higher TaxaElapidae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Speckled Coral Snake 
SynonymMicrurus margaritiferus ROZE 1967: 35
Micrurus margaritiferus — WELCH 1994: 87
Micrurus margaritiferus — VALENCIA 2006
Micrurus margaritiferus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 449 
DistributionNE Peru

Type locality: Boca Rio Santiago-Rio Marañon, Peru.  
TypesHolotype: AMNH 55362 (not 533362), a female 
DiagnosisDefinition: A black coral snake with a transverse series of white spots that form interrupted bands around the body, poorly outlining the black bands between them. Red bands are absent or found only on the venter (Roze 1996: 193).

Description: Males have around 205 and females have 221 to 225 (223.0) ventrals; subcaudals around 45 in males and 33 to 38 (35.5) in females; 1+1 temporals. Examined: 1 male and 2 females, including the holotype. Head, body, and tail are all black above with small white spots that form crossbands. A few white spots are present on several supralabials and on few shields below. The body has a poorly defined transverse series of white spots, less than one dorsal and ventrallong. The crossbands formed by the pearly white spots define the black areas as black bands on the body and on the tail. The black bands are alternately longer and shorter and correspond to the original shorter black bands and the originallonger red bands that are now black. Ventrally, red bands can be red or white. The males have around 68 and the females have 110 to 141 (125.5) poody defined black body bands and 10 to 13 tail bands (Roze 1996: 193). 

Distribution: Not in Ecuador fide Torres-Carvajal et al. 2019: 299 ff). 
EtymologyAfter the Latin “margarita” = pearl, and Greek “phorus” = carrying. 
  • Campbell, J.A. & Lamar, W.W. 1989. The Venomous Reptiles of Latin America. Comstock Publishing/Cornell University Press, Ithaca
  • FEITOSA, DARLAN TAVARES; NELSON JORGE DA SILVA JR., MATHEUS GODOY PIRES, HUSSAM ZAHER & ANA LÚCIA DA COSTA PRUDENTE 2015. A new species of monadal coral snake of the genus Micrurus (Serpentes, Elapidae) from western Amazon. Zootaxa 3974 (4): 538–554
  • Lee, Justin L.; Cristian Hernández-Morales, Roy W. McDiarmid 2018. First report on the reproductive biology and diet of two Coral Snake species (Micrurus) from the Western Amazon of Peru and Ecuador (Serpentes: Elapidae) using x-radiography. Herpetology Notes 11: 409-412 - get paper here
  • Roze, Jánis A 1967. A checklist of the New World venomous Coral Snakes (Elapidae), with descriptions of new forms. American Museum Novitates (2287): 1-60 - get paper here
  • VALENCIA, J. H. 2007. First record of the coral snake Micrurus margaritiferus ROZE, 1967 in Ecuador [Short Note]. Herpetozoa 19 (3/4): 186-187 - 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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