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Cubatyphlops contorhinus (THOMAS & HEDGES, 2007)

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Higher TaxaTyphlopidae (Typhlopinae), Typhlopoidea, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Cuban Short-nosed Blindsnake 
SynonymTyphlops contorhinus THOMAS & HEDGES 2007: 21
Cubatyphlops contorhinus — HEDGES et al. 2014
Typhlops contorhinus — PYRON & WALLACH 2014
Cubatyphlops contorhinus — NAGY et al. 2015
Typhlops contorhinus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 761 
DistributionExtreme E Cuba

Type locality: 4.9 km S La Tinta, Guantánamo Province, Cuba, 5 meters elevation.  
TypesHolotype: MNHNCu 4552 (field tag number 191296), a male, collected on 29 June 1990 by Richard Thomas, S. Blair Hedges, Emilio Alfaro, and Daniel McCallister. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A moderately large and slender species of the T. biminiensis group differing from all members of the species group in the Bahamas and Cuba in having a short rostral (Fig. 8), reflected in the high rostral indent (RI) value (Fig. 10F), and a large preocular apical diameter (Fig. 10C). The short rostral is also reflected in the width of the upper arm of the anterior nasal, which is relatively larger in T. contorhinus (ANT-NAS/RW1 = 0.49) than other species in the group except T. notorachius and T. anousius. It further differs from T. biminiensis in having a rostral with an acuminate posterior edge, not broadly rounded, and a more slender body (TL/MBD 63 versus 39–51). It differs from T. biminiensis, T. arator, and T. perimychus in having a narrower rostral (Fig 10A) that is relatively broad on the apex of the snout (Fig. 8). From T. perimychus, it also differs in being larger (316 mm versus 280 mm TL), having more middorsal scales (502 versus 453– 496), and a more slender body (TL/MBD 63 versus 41–59). In body shape, it is more slender (TL/MBD 63) than T. notorachius, T. anousius, and T. arator (Table 2). From T. anousius, it also differs in having scale row reduction at 31% TL rather than 2% TL. From T. arator, it further differs in having 24–22 scale rows rather than 26–24 rows and in having fewer middorsal scales (502 versus 578–579). 
EtymologyFrom the Greek, kontos, short, and rhinos, nose, an adjective meaning short-nosed. 
  • DOMÍNGUEZ, MICHEL & LUIS V. MORENO 2009. Taxonomy of the Cuban blind snakes (Scolecophidia, Typhlopidae), with the description of a new large species. Zootaxa 2028: 59-66 - get paper here
  • Hedges, S.B., Marion, A.B., Lipp, K.M., Marin, J. & Vidal, N. 2014. A taxonomic framework for typhlopid snakes from the Caribbean and other regions (Reptilia, Squamata). Caribbean Herpetology 49: 1–61 - get paper here
  • Kornilios, P.; S. Giokas, P. Lymberakis, R. Sindaco 2013. Phylogenetic position, origin and biogeography of Palearctic and Socotran blind-snakes (Serpentes: Typhlopidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 68 (1): 35–41 - get paper here
  • NAGY, ZOLTÁN T.; ANGELA B. MARION, FRANK GLAW, AURÉLIEN MIRALLES,<br />JOACHIM NOPPER, MIGUEL VENCES & S. BLAIR HEDGES 2015. Molecular systematics and undescribed diversity of Madagascan scolecophidian snakes (Squamata: Serpentes). Zootaxa 4040 (1): 031–047 - get paper here
  • Pyron, R.A. & Wallach, V. 2014. Systematics of the blindsnakes (Serpentes: Scolecophidia: Typhlopoidea) based on molecular and morphological evidence. Zootaxa 3829 (1): 001–081 - get paper here
  • Rodríguez Schettino, Lourdes, Carlos A. Mancina & Vilma Rivalta González 2013. REPTILES OF CUBA: CHECKLIST AND GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTIONS. Smithsonian Herp. Inf. Serv. (144): 1-96 - get paper here
  • THOMAS R. & S.B. HEDGES 2007. Eleven new species of snakes of the genus Typhlops (Serpentes: Typhlopidae) from Hispaniola and Cuba. Zootaxa 1400: 1-26 - get paper here
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