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Platyceps karelini (BRANDT, 1838)

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
SubspeciesPlatyceps karelini chesneii (MARTIN 1838)
Platyceps karelini karelini (BRANDT 1838)
Platyceps karelini mintonorum (MERTENS 1969) 
Common NamesE: Spotted Desert Racer 
SynonymColuber (Tyria) karelini BRANDT 1838
Zamenis karelini — BOULENGER 1890: 326
Zamenis karelini — BOULENGER 1893: 401
Zamenis karelini — WALL 1911
Coluber karelini — SMITH 1943: 169
Coluber karelini — LEVITON 1959: 454
Coluber karelini — MINTON 1966
Eremiophis karelini
Haemorrhois karelini
Coluber karelini —SCHÄTTI & WILSON 1986
Coluber karelini — DAS 1996: 55
Coluber karelini — SZCZERBAK 2003
Platyceps karelini — NAGY et al. 2004
Coluber karelinii — ANANJEVA et al. 2006
Platyceps karelini — WALLACH et al. 2014: 565

Platyceps karelini chesneii (MARTIN 1838)
Coluber chesneii MARTIN 1838
Platyceps karelini chesneii — SCHÄTTI et al. 2012

Platyceps karelini mintonorum (MERTENS 1969)
Coluber karelini mintonorum MERTENS 1969: 56
Platyceps mintonorum — SCHÄTTI et al. 2014 
DistributionPakistan, Iran (Kavir desert), Afghanistan,
S Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan

mintonorum: Pakistan, Iran; Type locality: “Zangi-Nawar, 27 km südwestlich Nushki. Distr. Chagai. West-Pakistan”

karelini: Iran, Turkmenistan; Type locality: W Turkmenistan Map legend:
TDWG region - Region according to the TDWG standard, not a precise distribution map.

NOTE: TDWG regions are generated automatically from the text in the distribution field and not in every cases it works well. We are working on it.
 
Reproductionoviparous 
TypesSyntypes: ZISP (ZIL) 1695-1700 (orig. AIS 1695-1700), largest specimen is 807 mm (M. Karéline, 1837).
Holotype: SMF 62942 [mintonorum] 
CommentSubspecies fide SCHÄTTI & WILSON 1986 and KHAN (2002, pers. comm.). Platyceps karelini rogersi (ANDERSON 1893) has been considered as a valid species recently although there are no reliable diagnostic characters to distinguish rogersi from ventromaculatus (Gray, 1834) according to DISI et al. (2001) and SCHÄTTI (2006). Khan (2006) regards mintonorum as a color variation of P. karelini and not meriting subspecific status.

Distribution: Not mentioned for Arabia by Egan 2007. Not in India fide I. Das (pers. comm., 22 Dec 2011); not in Iraq fide Habeeb & Rastegar-Pouyani 2016.See map in SCHÄTTI et al. 2014: 375.

Hybridization: Schätti et al. 2012 describe hybrids between P. karelini and P. rhodorachis. Schätti et al. 2014 also describe hybrids between Platyceps k. karelini × P. mintonorum from Afghanistan.

Diagnosis (mintonorum): “Eine mittelgroße, bis 1,5 m lange Natter aus der Verwandtschaft von Coluber karelini, mit zugespitzter Schnauze und einem ziemlich vorspringenden Rostrale, dem meist bis zum Auge reichenden 5. Supralabiale, aber mit 227—239 (statt 192—220) Ventralia und 114—123 (statt 85—117) Subcaudalia sowie einer wenig markanten Fleckenzeichnung auf dem Rücken.” (MERTENS 1969) 
EtymologyNamed after Madge and Sherman A. Minton (1919-1999), a physician by training. 
References
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  • SCHÄTTI, B. 2006. Racer populations from the Levant to the Caspian region referred to Platyceps ventromaculatus (Gray, 1834) (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubrinae). Revue suisse de Zoologie 113(3): 675-691 - get paper here
  • Schätti, B., Kucharzewski, C., Masroor, R. & Rastegar Puuyani, E. 2012. Platyceps karelini (Brandt, 1838) from Iran to Pakistan and revalidation of Coluber chesneii Martin, 1838 (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubrinae). Rev. Suisse Zool. 119 (4): 441-483
  • Schätti, Beat; Frank Tillack & Christoph Kucharzewski 2014. Platyceps rhodorachis (Jan, 1863) – a study of the racer genus Platyceps Blyth, 1860 east of the Tigris (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubridae). Vertebrate Zoology 64 (3): 297-405 - get paper here
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