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Acanthophis pyrrhus BOULENGER, 1898

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Higher TaxaElapidae (Hydrophiinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Desert Death Adder 
SynonymAcanthophis pyrrhus BOULENGER 1898: 75
Acanthophis antarcticus pyrrhus
Acanthophis pyrrhus — COGGER 2000: 634
Aggressiserpens pyrrhus — WELLS 2002
Acanthophis pyrrhus armstrongi WELLS & WELLINGTON 1985
Aggressiserpens armstrongi — WELLS 2002
Acanthophis pyrrhus — WILSON & SWAN 2010
Acanthophis pyrrhus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 4
Acanthophis pyrrhus — ELLIS et al. 2021 
DistributionAustralia (Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia)

Type locality: Station Point, N. T.  
TypesHolotype: BMNH 1946.1.18.62, purchased E. Gerrard 
EtymologyNamed after Pyrrhus (318-272 B.C.), who was a King in ancient Greece, but the snake is so named for the literal meaning of the word, which is "flamelike." 
  • Aplin, K. P. & Donnellan,S.C. 1999. An extended description of the Pilbara death adder, Acanthophis wellsi Hoser (Serpentes: Elapidae), with notes on the desert death adder, A.Pyrrhus Boulenger, and identification of a possible hybrid zone. Rec. West. Austr. Mus. 19: 277-298 - get paper here
  • 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. 1898. Description of a new death adder (Acanthophis) from central Australia. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (7) 2: 75 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • ELLIS, RYAN J.; HINRICH KAISER, SIMON T. MADDOCK, PAUL DOUGHTY & WOLFGANG WÜSTER 2021. An evaluation of the nomina for death adders (Acanthophis Daudin, 1803) proposed by Wells & Wellington (1985), and confirmation of A. cryptamydros Maddock et al., 2015 as the valid name for the Kimberley death adder Zootaxa 4995 (1): 161–172 - get paper here
  • MADDOCK, SIMON T.; RYAN J. ELLIS, PAUL DOUGHTY, LAWRENCE A. SMITH & WOLFGANG WÜSTER 2015. A new species of death adder (Acanthophis: Serpentes: Elapidae) from north-western Australia. Zootaxa 4007 (3): 301–326 - get paper here
  • Mirtschin, P., Rasmussen, A.R. & Weinstein, S.A. 2017. Australia’s Dangerous snakes. CSIRO Publishing, 424 pp. - get paper here
  • O’Shea, M. 2018. The Book of Snakes. Ivy Press / Quarto Publishing, London, - get paper here
  • Schulz, K.-D. & W. Grossmann 1990. Das Portrait: Acanthophis pyrrhus BOULENGER. Sauria 12 (2): 1-2 - get paper here
  • Shine R, Spencer CL, Keogh JS 2014. Morphology, Reproduction and Diet in Australian and Papuan Death Adders (Acanthophis, Elapidae). PLoS ONE 9(4): e94216 - get paper here
  • Storr, G. M. 1981. The genus Acanthophis (Serpentes : Elapidae) in Western Australia. Rec. West. Austr. Mus. 9: 203-210 - get paper here
  • Ukuwela, K.D.B., de Silva, A., Sivaruban, A. et al. 2022. Diversity, distribution, and natural history of the marine snakes of Sri Lanka. Marine Biodiversity 52, 24 (2022) - 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.
  • Wells, Richard W. 2002. Taxonomy the Genus Acanthophis (Reptilia: Elapidae) in Australia. Australian Biodiversity Record (5): 1-16
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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