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Homalopsis hardwickii GRAY, 1842

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Higher TaxaHomalopsidae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Hardwick’s Water Snake 
SynonymHomalopsis hardwickii GRAY 1842: 65
Homalopsis hardwickii — MURPHY et al. 2012
Homalopsis hardwickii — MURPHY & VORIS 2014: 24
Homalopsis hardwickii — WALLACH et al. 2014: 335 
DistributionNE India

Type locality: “India.”  
TypesHolotype: BMNH 1946.1.7.26.” 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Homalopsis hardwickii has a divided loreal contacting upper labials 1–4; two prefrontal scales; 39 scale rows at midbody reduced to 28 posteriorly; one postocular scale and no presubocular scale; 13 or 14 upper labials; 159 ventrals. Homalopsis buccata has a single loreal contacting upper labials 1–4; one postocular scale plus a postsubocular scale; H. nigroventralis has upper labials 1–3 contacting the loreal; one or two postocular scales plus one postsubocular scale; and a reverse color pattern on the venter (dark olive-gray with white spots). H. semi- zonata has three prefrontals; one postocular and one postsubocular. The new species, H. mereljcoxi, has a single loreal contacting upper labials 1–4; 40–49 scale rows at midbody, reduced to 30 or more posteriorly; and two pos- tocular scales plus a postsubocular [MURPHY et al. 2012]. 
CommentOnly known from a few museum specimens of uncertain origin. 
EtymologyNamed after Major-General Thomas Hardwicke (1756-1835) who served in the Bengal army of the Honourable East India Company. He was an amateur naturalist and collector who worked with Gray. 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Gray, J. E. 1842. Monographic Synopsis of the Water Snakes, or the Family of Hydridae. Zoological Miscellany 2: 59-68. - get paper here
  • Murphy, J.C. & Voris, H.K. 2014. A Checklist and Key to the Homalopsid Snakes (Reptilia, Squamata, Serpentes), with the Description of New Genera. FIELDIANA: LIFE AND EARTH SCIENCES (8): 1–43 - get paper here
  • MURPHY, JOHN C.; HAROLD K. VORIS, B.H.C.K. MURTHY, JOSHUA TRAUB & CHRISTINA CUMBERBATCH 2012. The masked water snakes of the genus Homalopsis Kuhl & van Hasselt, 1822 (Squamata, Serpentes, Homalopsidae), with the description of a new species. Zootaxa 3208: 1–26 - 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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