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Protobothrops himalayanus PAN, CHETTRI, YANG, JIANG, WANG, ZHANG & VOGEL, 2013

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Higher TaxaViperidae, Crotalinae, Colubroidea, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymProtobothrops himalayanus PAN, CHETTRI, YANG, JIANG, WANG, ZHANG & VOGEL 2013 
DistributionChina (S Tibet), Nepal, Bhutan, India (Sikkim)

Type locality: Jilong Valley, Jilong County, southern Tibet, China (85.35360° E, 28.37996° N; elevation 2708 m) 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.
 
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype: KIZ 012736 (Figure 1), an adult female, collected by Kai WANG and Hujun PAN on 14 June 2012, and deposited in KIZ. Paratypes: JL 20120614-001, an adult female from the same locality as the holotype, a road killed specimen, collected by Hujun PAN on 23 May 2012, and deposited in South China Institute of Endangered Animals, Guangzhou, China; ZSI 25990 (Figure 2), an adult male from Chungthang, northern Sikkim, India, collected by Basundhara CHETTRI on 16 August 2008, and deposited in ZSI, Kolkata, India. 
CommentDiagnosis: This new species is assigned to the genus Protobothrops on the basis of the following characters: 2 large solenoglyph teeth and a loreal pit; dorsal head covered with very small scales; body and tail elongated, thin and cylindrical; DSR 25 at midbody, keeled except the outermost; and distinct transverse bands found across body and tail (Hoge and Romano-Hoge, 1983). Protobothrops himalayanus sp. nov. differs from other species of Protobothrops by the following characters: 1) relatively large body size (TL up to 1510 mm ); 2) DSR 25–25–19; 3) with the exception of the smooth outermost row, dorsal scales are weakly keeled; 4) relatively high number of ventral (198–216) and subcaudal scales (65–76 pairs); 5) 7–8 supralabials; 6) 11 to 13 infralabials; 7) dorsal head uniform dark brown, laterally a reddish- brown obscure postocular streak, starting behind the eye; 8) dorsal body and tail olive, with distinct black edged red brown transverse bands across the body and tail; and 9) eye found from bright brown and reddish brown to mildly brown.

Distribution: see map in Guo et a. 2016: 383 (Fig. 1). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet is derived from the mountain range, the Himalayas. All of the current known distribution localities are on the southern slope of the Himalayas. The suggested English name is the Himalayan Pitviper, and the Chinese name is Xi Shan Yuan Mao Tou Fu. 
References
  • GUO, PENG; QIN LIU, TAO WEN, RONG XIAO, MING FANG, GUANGHUI ZHONG, NGUYEN Q. TRUONG, FEI ZHU, ROBERT C. JADIN, CAO LI 2016. Multilocus phylogeny of the Asian Lance-headed pitvipers (Squamata, Viperidae, Protobothrops) Zootaxa 4093 (3): 382–390 - get paper here
  • PAN, Hujun; Basundhara CHETTRI, Daode YANG, Ke JIANG, Kai WANG, Liang ZHANG and Gernot VOGEL 2013. A New Species of the Genus Protobothrops (Squamata: Viperidae) from Southern Tibet, China and Sikkim, India. Asian Herpetological Research 4 (2): 109–115 - get paper here
  • Vogel, Gernot 2014. „Harmlose“ Schlange auf der Straße oder die Entdeckung einer neuen Grubenotter im Himalaya. Terraria Elaphe 2014 (4): 60-63 - get paper here
 
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http://reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Protobothrops&species=himalayanus

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