Calamaria yunnanensis CHERNOV, 1962
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Calamaria yunnanensis?
|Higher Taxa||Colubridae, Calamariinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)|
|Common Names||Chinese: 云南两头蛇|
E: Yunnan reed snake
|Synonym||Calamaria yunnanensis CHERNOV 1962|
Calamaria yunnanensis — INGER & MARX 1965: 238 (”doubtful form”)
Calamaria yunnanensis — OTA 1982
Calamaria yunnanensis — YANG & INGER 1986
Calamaria yunnanensis — ZHAO & ADLER 1993
Calamaria yunnanensis — ZHAO 2006: 184
Calamaria yunnanensis — ORLOV et al. 2010
Calamaria yunnanensis — WALLACH et al. 2014: 142
|Distribution||China (Yunnan), Laos|
Type locality: Jingdong, Yunnan, China
|Types||Holotype: ZISP 17073|
|Diagnosis||Lee 2021 provides morphological data on 6 specimens of Calamaria yunnanensis in his Table 3 as well as characters across all 9 species of Calamaria known from mainland SE Asia (Table 4).|
Diagnosis: A species of Calamaria distinguished from all other members of the genus found in mainland Southeast Asia by having the following combination of morphological characters: (1) rostral scale wider than high; (2) portion of rostral scale visible from above less than half the length of the prefrontal suture; (3) six scales and shields surrounding the paraparietal scale; (4) absence of a preocular scale; (5) four supralabials, with the second and third touching the eye; (6) five or six infralabials, the first pair separating the mental scale from the anterior chin shields; (7) 167–184 ventrals in males, 199 in female, three gular scales; (8) 15–20 subcaudals in males, 19 in female, all paired; (9) dorsal colour pattern variable, usually bluish-grey or olive-brown with indistinct dark brown longitudinal stripes across each dorsal scale row forming a network-like pattern, sometimes restricted to the flanks; (10) ventral surface red or yellow usually with dark brown margins on the ventral scales and a black midventral stripe under the tail, completely immaculate in some specimens; and (11) a light yellow nuchal collar posterior to the head usually present, absent in some specimens. A summary of diagnostic characters and comparisons is given below and in Tables 3–4 (Lee 2021).
Coloration: Photographs of a live C. yunnanensis shown in Yang and Zheng (2018, fig. 4) and in Figure 1 offer some insight into the live colouration of this species. The specimen agrees with the colour pattern observed in KIZ 054176. However, the dorsum is predominately olive-brown, becoming dark grey-brown posteriorly, with well-defined dark brown longitudinal stripes across the body forming a network-like pattern on the dorsum. The venter in this specimen is a bright coral red, extending onto the lower flanks of the first two dorsal scale rows and on the labial region of the head and nostrils. A streak of red pigment forms a small marking posterior to the parietals but is too indistinct to be considered a nuchal collar, as it is nowhere near as pronounced as the markings present in other specimens. Red colouration may have been present on the ventral surface of other topotypic C. yunnanensis specimens and ROM 41547, but this pigment tends to fade quickly after preservation (Lee 2021).
|Comment||Synonymy: Listed by INGER & MARX 1965 as a “doubtful form” since they were not able to study the holotype. Might be synonymous to C. pavimentata or C. septentrionalis. However, Lee 2021 redescribed and re-diagnosed the species and therefore established its validity.|
|Etymology||Named after the type locality.|
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