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Atractus trilineatus WAGLER, 1828

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Three-lined Groundsnake, Three-lined Ground Snake 
SynonymColuber brachyurus KUHL 1820 (fide HOGMOED 1982)
Atractus trilineatus WAGLER 1828
Rhabdosoma lineatum — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1854: 105 (fide WALLACH p.c.)
Rabdosoma trivirgatum JAN 1862
Rabdosoma punctatovittatum JAN 1862
Rabdosoma trivirgatum — JAN 1865
Rabdosoma punctatovittatum — JAN 1865
Rhabdosoma lineatum — GARMAN 1887: 280
Atractus trilineatus — JOHNSON 1946
Atractus trilineatus — BEEBE 1946: 21
Atractus trilineatus — GORZULA & SEÑARIS 1999
Atractus trilineatus — PASSOS et al. 2007
Atractus trilineatus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 82
Atractus trilineatus — NOGUEIRA et al. 2019 
DistributionE Venezuela (Monagas, Sucre), Trinidad, Tobago, Brazil (Amazonas fide Martins & Oliveira, 1993, Roraima), W Guyana.

Type locality: Caracas, Distrito Federal, Venezuela.  
TypesLectotype: RMNH 48, a 205 mm female, designated by Hoogmoed, 1982: 135.
Lectotype: RMNH [Rhabdosoma lineatum] 
CommentSynonymy after PETERS & OREJAS-MIRANDA 1970: 35. Not listed by GASC & RODRIGUES 1980.

Variation within genus and species: the species of Atractus can be variable and hard to distinguish at the same time. Passos et al. 2022 estimated that > 30% of sequences or specimens available in GenBank are misidentified or doubtfully identified with respect to the study that produced such sequences; examples in their Table I).

Distribution: Has been erroneously reported from Suriname and French Guiana (fide Hoogmoed, 1979, 1982, Hoogmoed & Prudente 2003). See map in Nogueira et al. 2019.

Type species: Atractus trilineatus WAGLER 1828 is the type species of the genus Atractus.

Key: Esqueda & La Marca 2005: 26 provide a key to the Atractus of Venezuela.

Abundance: Most of the species of Atractus are only known from their type specimens (PASSOS et al. 2013: 35).

Nomenclature: The ICZN has conserved the generic name Atractus Wagler, 1828 for a group of common Neotropical snakes by suppressing its senior objective synonym Brachyura Kuhl & van Hasselt, 1822. In addition, the name Atractus trilineatus Wagler, 1828, the specific name of the type species of Atractus, has been given precedence over its senior objective synonym Brachyorrhos kuhli Schlegel, 1826.

Types: MHNN, now lost [Rabdosoma punctatovittatum]

Phylogenetics: for a recent phylogenetic analysis see Passos et al. 2022. 
  • Anonymous 2008. OPINION 2210 (Case 3365): Atractus Wagler, 1828 and Atractus trilineatus Wagler, 1828 (Reptilia, Serpentes): conserved. Bull. Zool. Nomenclature 65 (23):
  • Auguste, Renoir J. 2019. Herpetofaunal checklist for six pilot protected areas in Trinidad and Tobago. Herpetology Notes 12: 577-585 - get paper here
  • Beebe, William 1946. Field notes on the snakes of Kartabo, British Guiana, and Caripito, Venezuela. Zoologica 31: 11-52 - get paper here
  • Boos, H.E.A. 2001. The snakes of Trinidad and Tobago. Texas A&M University Press, 270 pp.
  • Claessen, H. 2003. De slangen can de Guyana’s. Deel iv. Lacerta 61 (1): 19-27 - get paper here
  • Cole, Charles J.; Carol R. Townsend, Robert P. Reynolds, Ross D. MacCulloch, and Amy Lathrop 2013. Amphibians and reptiles of Guyana, South America: illustrated keys, annotated species accounts, and a biogeographic synopsis. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 125 (4): 317-578; plates: 580-620 - get paper here
  • Duméril, A.M.C., G. BIBRON & A.H.A. DUMÉRIL 1854. Erpétologie générale ou Histoire Naturelle complète des Reptiles. Vol. 7 (partie 1). Paris, xvi + 780 S. - get paper here
  • Garman, S. 1887. On West Indian reptiles in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Cambridge, Mass. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 24: 278-286. - get paper here
  • Gasc & Rodrigues 1980. Liste preliminaire des Serpents de la Guyane francaise. Bull. Mus. Nat. Hist. Nat. Paris 2 (4): 559-598
  • Gorzula, Stefan & Senaris, J. Celsa 1999. In: Contribution to the herpetofauna of the Venezuelan Guayana. I: a data base. Scientia Guaianae, Caracas, No. 8 [1998], 269+ pp.; ISBN 980-6020-48-0
  • Hedges SB, Powell R, Henderson RW, Hanson S, and Murphy JC 2019. Definition of the Caribbean Islands biogeographic region, with checklist and recommendations for standardized common names of amphibians and reptiles. Caribbean Herpetology 67: 1–53
  • Hoogmoed, M. S. 1982. Nomenclatural problems relating to Atractus trilineatus Wagler, 1828. Zoologische Mededelingen Leiden 56 (10): 131-138 - get paper here
  • Hoogmoed, M.S. & J.M. Savage 2006. CASE 3365: Atractus Wagler, 1828 and Atractus trilineatus Wagler, 1828 (Reptilia, Serpentes): proposed precedence over Brachyura Kuhl, 1820 and Brachyorrhos kuhli Boie in Schlegel, 1826. Bull. Zool. Nomenclature 63 (1) - get paper here
  • Hoogmoed, M.S.; Savage, J.M. 2007. Case 3365. Atractus Wagler, 1828 and Atractus trilineatus Wagler, 1828 (Reptilia, Serpentes): proposed conservation. Bull. Zool. Nomenclature 64 (1): 60-63 - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1865. Iconographie générale des ophidiens. 11. Livraison. J.B. Bailière et Fils, Paris - get paper here
  • Johnson, M.L. 1946. Herpetological Notes from Trinidad. Copeia 1946 (2): 108 - get paper here
  • Lancini,A.R. & Kornacker,P.M. 1989. Die Schlangen von Venezuela. Armitano Editores C.A., Caracas, 1-381
  • Lynn, W.G. 1959. Some Reptiles and Amphibians From Trinidad. Herpetologica 15 (3): 113-117 - get paper here
  • Martins M. & Oliveira M E. 1993. The snakes of the genus Atractus Wagler (Reptilia: Squamata: Colubridae) from the Manaus region, central Amazonia, Brazil. Zoologische Mededelingen 67 (1-26): 21-40. - get paper here
  • Mertens, R. 1972. Herpetofauna tobagana. Stuttgarter Beitr. zur Naturkunde nr. 252 22 pp. - get paper here
  • Murphy, J. C., Salvi, D., Braswell, A. L. and Jowers, M. J. 2020. Morphology and natural history of three-lined snakes, Atractus trilineatus (Squamata, Dipsadidae), in the Eastern Caribbean. IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 26: 189-196. - get paper here
  • Murphy, John C.; Daniele Salvi, Alvin L. Braswell & Michael J. Jowers 2019. Phylogenetic Position and Biogeography of Three-Lined Snakes (Atractus trilineatus: Squamata, Dipsadidae) in the Eastern Caribbean. Herpetologica 75 (3): 247-253 - get paper here
  • Natera-Mumaw, Marco; Luis Felipe Esqueda-González & Manuel Castelaín-Fernández 2015. Atlas Serpientes de Venezuela. Santiago de Chile, Dimacofi Negocios Avanzados S.A., 456 pp. - get paper here
  • Nogueira, Cristiano C.; Antonio J.S. Argôlo, Vanesa Arzamendia, Josué A. Azevedo, Fausto E. Barbo, Renato S. Bérnils, Bruna E. Bolochio, Marcio Borges-Martins, Marcela Brasil-Godinho, Henrique Braz, Marcus A. Buononato, Diego F. Cisneros-Heredia, 2019. Atlas of Brazilian snakes: verified point-locality maps to mitigate the Wallacean shortfall in a megadiverse snake fauna. South American J. Herp. 14 (Special Issue 1):1-274 - get paper here
  • PASSOS P, MELO-SAMPAIO PR, RAMOS LO, GRAZZIOTIN FG, FOUQUET A & TORRES-CARVAJAL O. 2022. When the tail shakes the snake: phylogenetic affinities and morphology of Atractus badius (Serpentes: Dipsadidae), reveals some current pitfalls on the snake’s genomic age. An Acad Bras Cienc 94: e20191254 - get paper here
  • Passos, P. & Fernandes, R. 2008. A new species of the colubrid snake genus Atractus (Reptilia: Serpentes) from the central Amazon of Brazil. Zootaxa 1849: 59–66 - get paper here
  • Passos, P., R. Fernandes and Borges-Nojosa, D.M. 2007. A New Species of Atractus (Serpentes: Dipsadinae) from a Relictual Forest in Northeastern Brazil. Copeia 2007 (4): 788–797 - get paper here
  • PASSOS, PAULO; LUCIANA O. RAMOS, PEDRO H. PINNA, ANA L.C. PRUDENTE 2013. Morphological variation and affinities of the poorly known snake Atractus caxiuana (Serpentes: Dipsadidae). Zootaxa 3745 (1): 035–048 - get paper here
  • Passos, Paulo; Philippe J. R. Kok, Nelson R. de Albuquerque, and Gilson A. Rivas 2013. Groundsnakes of the Lost World: A Review of Atractus (Serpentes: Dipsadidae) from the Pantepui Region, Northern South America. Herpetological Monographs 27 (1): 52-86 - get paper here
  • RIVAS, GILSON A.; CÉSAR R. MOLINA, GABRIEL N. UGUETO, TITO R. BARROS, CÉSAR L. BAR- RIO-AMORÓS & PHILIPPE J. R. KOK 2012. Reptiles of Venezuela: an updated and commented checklist. Zootaxa 3211: 1–64 - get paper here
  • Roze, Jánis A. 1961. El genero Atractus (Serpentes: Colubridae) en Venezuela. Acta Biologica Venezuelica 3 (7): 103-119
  • Snyder, Andrew M. 2016. Atractus trilineatus (Three-lined Ground Snake) Predation. Herpetological Review 47 (2): 308 - get paper here
  • Starace, Fausto 1998. Guide des Serpents et Amphisbènes de Guyane. IBIS Rouge Editions, Guadeloupe, Guyane, 450 pp.
  • Starace, Fausto 2013. Guide des Serpents et Amphisbènes de Guyane. Ibis Rouge Editions, Matoury, Guyane, ISBN 978-2-84450-407-4 - get paper here
  • Wagler, J. 1828. Auszüge aus seinem Systema Amphibiorum. Isis von Oken 21: 740-744 - 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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