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Plectrurus guentheri BEDDOME, 1863

IUCN Red List - Plectrurus guentheri - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaUropeltidae, Henophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Günther's Burrowing Snake 
SynonymPlectrurus güntheri BEDDOME 1863
Plectrurus guentheri BEDDOME 1863
Plectrurus guentheri BEDDOME 1864: 180
Plectrurus Güntheri — BEDDOME 1886: 26
Plectrurus guentheri — BOULENGER 1893: 162
Plectrurus guentheri — SMITH 1943: 72
Plectrurus guentheri — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 134
Plectrurus guentheri — DAS 2003
Plectrurus guentheri — WALLACH et al. 2014: 569 
DistributionS India (Kerala)

Type locality: „Walaghat on the Western slopes of the Neilgherries" (= Nilgiri Hills)  
TypesSyntypes: BMNH 1946.1.16.32 (formerly 
DiagnosisDescription provided by BDDOME (1864: 180): “Scales of the neck in 17 rows; anterior portion of the trunk in 13 rows, of the rest of the body in 15 rows; head-shields as in P. Perrotteti, only the rostral is not produced so far back. All the scales of the tail 5-6-keeled, and some of the approximated scales of the body also keeled; terminal scale of the tail with four sharp points, and covered with small tubercles; abdominals 172, and a bifid anal; subcaudals 12. Total length 13 inches, circumference 18 inch. Colour of the body a bright reddish purple; belly yellow, the yellow colour rising up on the sides of the trunk into regular pyramid-shaped markings, and the purple colour descending in the same way down to the abdominals” 
EtymologyNamed after Albert Günther (1830-1914), German-born zoologist at the British Museum. 
  • Beddome, R.H. 1864. Description of new species of the family Uropeltidae from Southern India, with notes on other little-known species. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (3) 13: 177-180 - get paper here
  • Beddome, R.H. 1886. An account of the earth snakes of the Peninsula of India and Ceylon. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (5) 17: 3-33. - get paper here
  • Beddome, RICHARD HENRY 1863. Descriptions of new species of the family Uropeltidae from Southern India, with notes on other little-known species. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1863: 225-229. - get paper here
  • Beddome, RICHARD HENRY 1863. Further notes upon the snakes of the Madras Presidency; with descriptions of new species. Madras Quart. J. Med. Sci., 6: 41-48 [Reprint: J. Soc. Bibliogr. Nat. Sci., London, 1 (10): 306-314, 1940]
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Das, Indraneil 2003. Growth of Knowledge on the Reptiles of India, with an Introduction to Systematics, Taxonomy and Nomenclature. J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 100 (2-3): 446-502 - get paper here
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. [type catalogue] Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • Palot, M.J. 2015. A checklist of reptiles of Kerala, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa 7(13): 8010–8022 - get paper here
  • Sharma, R. C. 2004. Handbook Indian Snakes. AKHIL BOOKS, New Delhi, 292 pp.
  • Smith, M.A. 1943. The Fauna of British India, Ceylon and Burma, Including the Whole of the Indo-Chinese Sub-Region. Reptilia and Amphibia. 3 (Serpentes). Taylor and Francis, London. 583 pp.
  • 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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