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Tropidonophis mcdowelli MALNATE & UNDERWOOD, 1988

IUCN Red List - Tropidonophis mcdowelli - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Natricinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Northern New Guinea keelback 
SynonymTropidonophis mcdowelli MALNATE & UNDERWOOD 1988: 142
Tropidonotus mairii DE ROOIJ 1917: 79 (part.)
Tropidonophis mcdowelli — WALLACH et al. 2014: 750 
DistributionIndonesia (Irian Jaya, Otakwa River), Papua New Guinea (West Sepik Province)

Type locality: Camp III, Otakwa River, Irian Jaya, 2500 feet (767 m).  
TypesHolotype: BMNH 1913.11.1.100 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Distinguished from other New Guinea Tropidonophis by the following combination of characteristics: (1) head and neck pattern consisting of a bold postocular black stripe continuing onto the side of the neck and a dark nuchal crossband followed by prominent dark spots on the neck; (2) pits present in the shields of the crown forward to the internasals; (3) pits present in most sub- caudals (85% to 100% of the scutes); (4) 135-143 ventrals; 79-95 subcaudals; (5) tail length 28% to 35% of the total length. The presence of pits in the crown shields forward of the parietals will differentiate mcdowelli from all species except picturatus; from picturatus it is distinguishable by the much higher number of subcaudals and sc/v+sc values (Table 19) (Malnate & Underwood 1988: 142). 
EtymologyNamed after Samuel B. Mcdowell, American herpetologist (1928-2014). 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Crumly, Charles R. 2015. Obituary: Samuel Booker McDowell, Jr. (13 Sept 1928 - 31 Dec 2014) The most important herpetologist you never knew. Herpetological Review 46 (3): 489-493 - get paper here
  • de Rooij, N. DE 1917. The Reptiles of the Indo-Australian Archipelago. Il. Ophidia. Leiden (E. J. Brill), xiv + 334 S. - get paper here
  • Malnate E V; Underwood G 1988. Australasian natricine snakes of the genus Tropidonophis. PROCEEDINGS OF THE ACADEMY OF NATURAL SCIENCES OF PHILADELPHIA 140 (1) : 59-201 - get paper here
  • O'Shea,M. 1996. A Guide to the Snakes of Papua New Guinea. Independent Publishing, Port Moresby, xii + 239 pp. - 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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