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Helicops scalaris JAN, 1865

IUCN Red List - Helicops scalaris - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Ladder Keelback (Hoge's Keelback) 
SynonymHelicops scalaris JAN 1865: 250
Helicops scalaris — BOULENGER 1893: 279
Helicops hogei LANCINI 1964 (fide ROSSMAN
Helicops scalaris — PETERS & OREJAS-MIRANDA 1970: 125
Helicops hogei — PETERS & OREJAS-MIRANDA 1970: 124
Helicops hogei — KORNACKER 1999: 88
Helicops scalaris — KORNACKER 1999: 89
Helicops hogei — RIVAS et al. 2012
Helicops scalaris — RIVAS et al. 2012
Helicops scalaris — WALLACH et al. 2014: 323
Helicops hogei — NATERA-MUMAW et al. 2015: 181
Helicops scalaris — NATERA-MUMAW et al. 2015: 182 
DistributionVenezuela (Zulia), Colombia

hogei: Venezuela (TF Amazonas, Delta Amacuro); Type locality: Río Autana, Territorio Federal Amazonas, Venezuela.

Type locality: Venezuela.  
Reproductionovovivparous (Braz et al. 2016) 
TypesHolotype: MRSN (= MSNTO = MZUT), a 410 mm specimen. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: This species can be distinguished from all its congeners except H. trivittatus by the combination of having intergenials, 110–119 ventrals in males and 113–125 in females, and 67–95 subcaudals. From H. trivittatus it differs in having a blotched dorsum, versus striped in H. trivittatus (for information on references see Suppl. material 3, Schöneberg & Köhler 2021). 
CommentSynonymy: RIVAS et al. 2012 recognize Helicops hogei as distinct, but note that “a reassessment of the species is suggested in order to support its validity (see Rossman 2002)”. 
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Braz, Henrique B.; Rodrigo R. Scartozzoni, Selma M. Almeida-Santos 2016. Reproductive modes of the South American water snakes: A study system for the evolution of viviparity in squamate reptiles. Zoologischer Anzeiger 263: 33-44; doi:10.1016/j.jcz.2016.04.003 - get paper here
  • Costa, Henrique C.; Diego J. Santana, Fernando Leal, Ricardo Koroiva, and Paulo C.A. Garcia 2016. A New Species of Helicops (Serpentes: Dipsadidae: Hydropsini) from Southeastern Brazil. Herpetologica 72 (2): 157-166 - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1865. Enumerazione sistematica degli ofidi appartenenti ai gruppo Potamophilidae. Archive per la Zoologia, l’Anatomia et la Fisiologia 3 (2): 201-265 - get paper here
  • Kawashita-Ribeiro, Ricardo Alexandre; Robson Waldemar Ávila, and Drausio Honorio Morais 2013. A New Snake of the Genus Helicops Wagler, 1830 (Dipsadidae, Xenodontinae) from Brazil. Herpetologica 69 (1): 80-90. - get paper here
  • Kornacker,P.M. 1999. Checklist and key to the snakes of Venezuela. PaKo-Verlag, Rheinbach, Germany, 270 pp.
  • Lancini,A.R. 1964. Publicaciones Ocasionales del Museo de Ciencias Naturales Venezuela, Caracas, 7: 2
  • Lancini,A.R. & Kornacker,P.M. 1989. Die Schlangen von Venezuela. Armitano Editores C.A., Caracas, 1-381
  • MORAES-DA-SILVA, ANTONIO; RENATA CECÍLIA AMARO, PEDRO M. SALES NUNES, CHRISTINE STRÜSSMANN, MAURO JUNIOR TEIXEIRA, ALBEDI JR. ANDRADE, VINÍCIUS SUDRÉ, RENATO RECODER, MIGUEL TREFAUT RODRIGUES, FELIPE FRANCO CURCIO 2019. Chance, luck and a fortunate finding: a new species of watersnake of the genus Helicops Wagler, 1828 (Serpentes: Xenodontinae), from the Brazilian Pantanal wetlands. Zootaxa 4651 (3): 445–470 - 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
  • Pérez-Santos,C. & Moreno, A.G. 1988. Ofidios de Colombia. Museo reegionale di Scienze Naturali, Torino, Monographie VI, 517 pp.
  • 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
  • Rossman, D. 2002. Variation in the xenodontid water snake Helicops scalaris Jan, and the status of H. hogei Lancini. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Natural Science (78): 1-18. [Louisiana State University] - get paper here
  • Schöneberg, Y., & Köhler, G. 2021. Distribution and identification of the species in the genus Helicops Wagler, 1830 (Serpentes, Colubridae, Xenodontinae). ARPHA Preprints, 1, e67869 - 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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