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Atractus chthonius PASSOS & LYNCH, 2010

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common Names 
SynonymAtractus chthonius PASSOS & LYNCH 2010
Atractus chthonius — WALLACH et al. 2014: 70 
DistributionColombia (Cauca, Huila: Eastern versant of the Cordillera Central, elevation 1500-2400 m)

Type locality: Finca Meremburg, Santa Leticia (02° 14’ N, 76* 10’ W, ca. 2400 m elevation), between municipalities of Popayán in the department of Cauca and La Plata in the department of Huila, Colombia.  
TypesHolotype: ICN-MHN = ICN 5662, adult male 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Atractus chthonius is distinguished from all congeners by having: (1) 17/ 17/17 smooth dorsal scale rows; (2) two postoculars; (3) loreal long; (4) temporals 1 + 2; (5) seven supralabials, third and fourth contacting orbit; (6) generally six infralabials, first three contacting chinshields; (7) 9–11 maxillary teeth; (8) four gular scale rows; (9) generally four preventrals; (10) 137–148 ventrals in females, 138–146 in males; (11) 17–25 subcaudals in females, 20–21 in males; (12) dorsum beige usually with a narrow black vertebral and two dorsolateral cream stripes, first dorsal scale rows brown colored contrasting with remaining dorsal series; (13) venter creamish white, usually with brown blotches forming a central stripe along the body; (14) moderate body size, females reaching 455 mm SVL, males 297 mm SVL; (15) moderate tail length in females (9.0–11.8% SVL) and males (9.2–11.7% SVL); (16) hemipenis slightly bilobed, semicapitate, semicalyculate. 
EtymologyEtymology.—The specific epithet ‘‘chtho- nius’’ is a Latin word derived from the Greek Kthon, meaning something rises on the ground. This name is used herein in reference to the pre-Colombian civilization Tierradentro (= inside of the ground), which originally inhabited the region where Atractus chtho- nius is distributed, and also as reference to the secretive habits of the new species. 
  • Passos, Paulo and John D. Lynch 2010. Revision of Atractus (Serpentes: Dipsadidae) from Middle and Upper Magdalena Drainage of Colombia. Herpetological Monographs 24 (1): 149-173 - 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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