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Platyceps tessellata (WERNER, 1910)

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Common Names 
SynonymZamenis rhodorhachis var. tessellata WERNER 1910: 277
Coluber rhodorachis ssp — PERRY 1985
Platyceps tessellata — PERRY 2012 
DistributionEgypt (Sinai), S Israel

Type locality: “Asie Mineure,” most likely in error (see WERNER 1910 and PERRY 2012).  
TypesHolotype: IRSNB 245 
CommentSynonymy: PERRY 2012: 97 considered Platyceps saharicus a synonym of Platyceps tessellata, but the status of the former is not clear (Guy Sinaiko, pers. comm. 6 Nov 2017) and Sinaiko et al. 2018 considered P. saharicus as valid. Perry 1985 announced a new subspecies without actually describing or naming it.

Distribution: Animals from Eritrea and Ethiopia identified by Largen and Spawls (2010) as P. rhodorachis most likely also belong to this taxon (fide PERRY 2012). Has been also reported from SE Algeria, Libya, Chad, Sudan (Nubia), SW Jordan, NW Saudi Arabia, S Oman. Not mentioned for Arabia by Egan 2007. 
EtymologyNamed after its distribution area. In most of its distribution area the records are rather scattered. 
  • Bauer, Aaron M.; Jonathan C. DeBoer , Dylan J. Taylor 2017. Atlas of the Reptiles of Libya. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. 64 (8): 155-318 - get paper here
  • Böhme, Wolfgang 2010. A list of the herpetological type specimens in the Zoologisches Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig, Bonn. Bonn zoological Bulletin 59: 79-108 - get paper here
  • Perry, G. 1985. A new subspecies of Coluber rhodorachis (Ophidia: Colubridae) from Israel. Israel Journal of Zoology 33:123 [meeting abstract]
  • Perry, Gad 2012. On the Appropriate Names for Snakes Usually Identified as Coluber rhodorachis (Jan, 1865) or Why Ecologists Should Approach the Forest of Taxonomy with Great Care. IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 19 (2): 90–100 - get paper here
  • Schätti, B. & McCarthy, C. 2004. Saharo-Arabian racers of the Platyceps rhodorhachis complex - description of a new species (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubrinae). Revue Suisse de Zoologie 111 (4): 691-705 - 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.
  • Werner, F. 1910. Neue oder seltenere Reptilien des Musée Royal d'Histoire Naturelle de Belgique in Brüssel. [Mabuia dolloi, Mabuia polylepis]. Zool. Jb. Abt. Syst. Okol. Geogr. 28 [1909]: 263-288. - get paper here
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