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Candoia bibroni (DUMÉRIL & BIBRON, 1844)

IUCN Red List - Candoia bibroni - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaBoidae (Candoiinae, Candoiidae), Henophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Pacific Boa; bibroni: Fiji Island Boa; australis: Solomon Island Tree Boa
G: Pazifik-Boa 
SynonymEnygrus bibroni DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1844: 483
Boa australis MONTROUZIER 1860: 95
Enygrus Bibroni — JAN 1861
Enygrus bibroni — BOULENGER 1893: 106
Enygrus australis — BOULENGER 1893: 105
Enygrus australis — BOULENGER 1897: 307
Enygrus bibronii — GARMAN 1901: 12
Enygrus australis — DE ROOIJ 1917: 33
Enygrus australis — BARBOUR 1921: 109
Enygrus bibronii — BARBOUR 1921: 109
Enygrus australis — HIGGINS 1943
Candoia bibroni — MCDOWELL 1979: 12
Candoia bibroni — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 187
Candoia bibroni — AUSTIN 2000
Candoia bibroni australis — CORVÉE & WEFFER 2004
Candoia bibroni — WALLACH et al. 2014: 147
Candoia bibroni — REYNOLDS & HENDERSON 2018: 25 
DistributionWestern Samoa, Melanesia, Polynesia, Solomon Islands [McCoy 2000], New Caledonia (Loyalty Islands, but not mainland NC), Tonga, Loh, Linua, Tegua, Hiu Islands, Vanuatu

Type locality: Viti Levu, Fiji Islands  
TypesSyntypes MNHN-RA 0061-0061A, MNHNn-RA 1313, MNHN-RA 3276-3277 
DiagnosisScalation: 207-259 ventral scales, 31-41 midbody scale rows, 47-62 subcaudals. Loyalty Island snakes have scale counts that are typically at the high end ofthe species range (Bauer & Sadlier 2000: 222).

Color:Typically brownish, reddish brown, or olive with large black dorsal markings and smaller white spots. Venter grayish or more brightly colored (yellow to orangish red) (Bauer & Sadlier 2000: 222).

Variation: Pemales are larger than males. Spurs are present in all males and many females, but are much larger in males (Harlow and Shine 1992). Roux (1913) and McDowell (1979) noted significant inter-island variation in midbody and ventral scale row counts in the Loyalties, low counts typify Ouvéan populations, whereas Lifou specimens have the highest counts. Bavay (1869) noted extensive individual color variation with sorne specimens nearly uniform in color and others strongly marked with a black pattern on the dorsum. Parallel black lines are present on the ventral scales ventromedially in the Maré and Ouvéa populations. Black dashes ventrolaterally are typical of Lifou specimens (Bauer & Sadlier 2000: 222).

Comparison with other species: No other large terrestrial snakes occur in the New Caledonian region. It is the longest and most slender species of Candoia and the large number of ventral scales distinguish it from congeners (Bauer & Sadlier 2000: 222).

Size: SVL460-1460 mm (mean 720.5 for males, 983.1 for females) (Harlow and Shine 1992).

Detailed morphological description: McDowell 1979: 12 ff. 
CommentSynonymy: Has been described originally as Tropidoboa de Bibron by HOMBRON & JACQUINOT (1842, Ophidien, planche 1).

Subspecies: Reynolds and Henderson 2018 do not recognize C. bibroni australis.

Distribution: Not on mainland of New Caledonia fide BAUER & VINDUM 1990.

Habitat: fully arboreal (Harrington et al. 2018). 
EtymologyNamed after Gabriel Bibron (1806-1848), French zoologist. 
  • Austin,C.C. 2000. Molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography of Pacific Island boas (Candoia). Copeia 2000 (2): 341-352 - get paper here
  • Barbour, Thomas 1921. Reptiles and amphibians from the British Solomon Islands. Proc. New England zool. Club 7: 91-112 - get paper here
  • Bauer, A. M. & SADLIER, R. A. 2000. The herpetofauna of New Caledonia. Contributions to Herpetology, 17; Society for Study Amphibians and Reptiles, Ithaca, New York.
  • Bauer, A.M. 1999. The terrestrial reptiles of New Caledonia: The origin and evolution of a highly endemic herpetofauna. In: Ota,H. (ed) Tropical Island herpetofauna..., Elsevier, pp. 3-25 - get paper here
  • Bauer, Aaron M.;Vindum, Jens V. 1990. A checklist and key to the herpetofauna of New Caledonia, with remarks on biogeography. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. 47 (2): 17-45 - 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. 1897. On the reptiles of Rotuma Island, Polynesia. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (6) 20: 306-307 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1886. On the reptiles and batrachians of the Solomon Islands. Trans. Zool. Soc. London 12: 35-62
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Clause, A.G., Fraser, M.J., Pene, S., Thomas-Moko, N. & Fisher, R.N. 2017. Candoia bibroni (Pacific Boa) Diet. Herpetological Review 48 (3): 667-668. - get paper here
  • Colvée, S. & Martín, A. 2005. Keeping Pacific Island Boas of the Genus Candoia. Reptilia (GB) (39): 73-77 - get paper here
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  • Daza, Juan D.; Aaron M. Bauer, Christophe Sand, Ian Lilley, Thomas A. Wake, and Frédérique Valentin 2015. Reptile Remains from Tiga (Tokanod), Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia. Pacific Science Oct 2015, Vol. 69, No. 4: 531-557. - 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
  • Duméril, A. M. C. and G. Bibron. 1844. Erpetologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complete des Reptiles. Vol.6. Libr. Encyclopédique Roret, Paris, 609 pp. - get paper here
  • Forcart, L. 1951. Nomenclature Remarks on Some Generic Names of the Snake Family Boidae. Herpetologica 7: 197-199 - get paper here
  • Garman, S. 1901. Some reptiles and batrachians from Australasia. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 39: 1-14 - get paper here
  • Gill B J. 1993. The Land Reptiles of Western Samoa. Journal of the Royal Society Of New Zealand 23 (2): 79-89. - get paper here
  • Harrington, Sean M; Jordyn M de Haan, Lindsey Shapiro, Sara Ruane 2018. Habits and characteristics of arboreal snakes worldwide: arboreality constrains body size but does not affect lineage diversification. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 125 (1): 61–71 - get paper here
  • Higgins, H. 1943. A Few Reptiles from Western Samoa. Copeia 1943 (1): 59 - get paper here
  • Ineich, I. 2009. The terrestrial herpetofauna of Torres and Banks Groups (northern Vanuatu), with report of a new species for Vanuatu. Zootaxa 2198: 1-15 - get paper here
  • Ineich, I. 2011. Amphibians and reptiles. In: Bouchet P., Le Guyader H. & PascaL O. (eds), The Natural History of Santo. pp. 187-236. MNhN, Paris; Ird, Marseille; PNI, Paris. 572 pp. (Patrimoines naturels; 70). - get paper here
  • Jacquinot, H. & Guichenot, A. 1853. Reptiles et poissons. In: HOMBRON & JACQUINOT, Zoologie 3, in: Dumont d’Urville, Voyage au Pole Sud et dans l’Océanie sur les corvettes l’Astrolabe et la Zélée, ... Gide & J. Baudry, Paris, 56 pp. [According to Sherborn & Woodward (1901), the text is dated as 1846-1854; but Plate 2 of the Sauriens appeared in 1842 fide Clark & Crosnier 2000] - get paper here
  • Kinghorn, J.R. 1928. Herpetology of the Solomon Islands. Rec. Austral. Mus. 16: 123-178 - get paper here
  • McCoy, M. 2000. Reptiles of the Solomon Islands. ZooGraphics, Kuranda (Australia), CD-ROM.
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  • McCoy, M. 2015. A Field Guide to the Reptiles of the Solomon Islands. Michael McCoy, Kuranda - get paper here
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. [type catalogue] Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • McDowell S B 1979. A catalogue of the snakes of New Guinea and the Solomons, with special reference to those in the Bernice P. Bishop Museum. Part 3. Boinae and Acrochordoidea (Reptilia, Serpentes). Journal of Herpetology 13 (1): 1-92 - get paper here
  • MONTROUZIER 1860. [Untitled note on Boa australis]. Rev. et Mag. Zool.xii: 95
  • Morrison, C. 2003. A Field Guide to the Herpetofauna of Fiji. Suva, Fiji: Institute of Applied Sciences, University of the South Pacific, 121 pp.
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  • Reynolds, R. Graham and Robert W. Henderson 2018. Boas of the World (Superfamily Booidae): A Checklist With Systematic, Taxonomic, and Conservation Assessments. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology Sep 2018, Vol. 162, No. 1: 1-58. - get paper here
  • Sadlier R A. Bauer A M. 1997. The terrestrial herpetofauna of the Loyalty Islands. Pacific Science 51 (1): 76-90.
  • Schmidt, Dieter 2010. Vermehrung und Zucht von Riesenschlangen. Draco 11 (44): 4-17 - get paper here
  • Schweizer, Hans 1970. Farbwechsel bei einer Pazifik-Boa (Candoia bibroni australis Montrousier, 1860). Aqua Terra 7 (2): 19-22
  • 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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