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Homoroselaps lacteus (LINNAEUS, 1758)

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Higher TaxaAtractaspididae (Atractaspidinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Spotted Harlequin Snake 
SynonymColuber lacteus LINNAEUS 1758: 220
Elaps lacteus SCHNEIDER 1801
Coluber hygeiae — SHAW 1802: 487
Coluber iphisa — DAUDIN 1803: 416
Elaps punctatus SMITH 1826: 254
Elaps hygeae — SMITH 1849: 21 (appendix)
? Elaps hygiae — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1854: 1213
Homoroselaps hygiae — JAN 1858: 518
Poecilophis hygiae — GÜNTHER 1859: 88
Elaps hygiae — MÜLLER 1880
? Elaps higiae —BOULENGER 1887: 180
Elaps hygiae ehrysopeleoides MÜLLER 1887
Homoroselaps lacteus — BOULENGER 1896: 409
Micropechis crucifer DE VIS 1905: 52 (fide INGRAM et al. 1981)
Elaps lacteus — LOVERIDGE 1936: 42
Homoroselaps lacteus — WELCH 1994: 65
Homoroselaps lacteus — MATTISON 1995: 102
Homoroselaps lacteus — MATTISON 2007: 104
Homoroselaps lacteus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 336 
DistributionN Republic of South Africa

Type locality: “Indiis” (in error)  
TypesType: NRM (= NHRM) (Stockholm) (Andersson 1899: 15) 
CommentThis genus is a sister taxon to Atractaspis and has therefore been assigned to the Atractaspididae by NAGY et al. 2005. Previously the genus Homoroselaps has been assigned to the Elapidae.

Type species: Coluber lacteus LINNAEUS 1758: 220 is the type species of the genus Homoroselaps JAN 1858.

Synonymy: partly after Boulenger 1896: 409 
  • Bates, M.F.; Branch, W.R., Bauer, A.M.; Burger, M., Marais, J.; Alexander, G.J. & de Villliers, M.S. (eds.) 2014. Atlas and Red List of the Reptiles of South Africa, Lesotho, and Swaziland. Suricata 1. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, 512 pp.
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1887. Synopsis of the snakes of South Africa. The Zoologist, London, (3) 11: 171-182
  • Branch, W. R. 1991. Venoms and Snakebite: Homoroselaps lacteus: Envenomation. J. Herp. Assoc. Africa (39): 28-28 - get paper here
  • Branch, William R. 1993. A Photographic Guide to Snakes and Other Reptiles of Southern Africa. Cape Town: Struik Publishers, 144 S.
  • Conradie, Werner; Brain Reeves, Sandile Mdoko, Lwandiso Pamla, Oyama Gxabhu 2020. Herpetological survey of the Ongeluksnek (Malekgalonyane) Nature Reserve on the foothills of the Drakensberg, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. Herpetology Notes 13: 717-730 - get paper here
  • de Vis, Charles Walter de 1905. A new genus of lizard. On Typhlops torresianus. Ann. Queensland Museum (Brisbane) 6: 48 - get paper here
  • Dobiey, M. & Vogel, G. 2007. Venomous Snakes of Africa - Giftschlangen Afrikas. Edition Chimaira, Terralog 15, 150 pp. - get paper here
  • Duméril, A. M. C., Bibron, G. & DUMÉRIL, A. H. A., 1854. Erpétologie générale ou histoire naturelle complète des reptiles. Tome septième. Deuxième partie, comprenant l'histoire des serpents venimeux. Paris, Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret: i-xii + 781-1536 - get paper here
  • Fraser M. 2023. Reptiles and Amphibians of the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, Western Cape, South Africa. Biodiversity Observations 13: 162–185. 14 March 2023 - get paper here
  • Ingram, G. J. & J. Covacevich 1981. Frog and reptile type specimens in the Queensland Museum, with a checklist of frogs and reptiles in Queensland. [type catalogue] Memoirs of the Queensland Museum, Brisbane, 20 (2): 291-306 - get paper here
  • Linnaeus, C. [= Linné, C. von] 1758. Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii, Holmiæ. 10th Edition: 824 pp. - get paper here
  • Loveridge, A. 1936. African reptiles and amphibians in the Field Museum of Natural History. Zool. Ser. Field Mus. Nat. Hist., Chicago, 22 (1): 1-122 - get paper here
  • Massimo Capalbo 2024. The World's Most Dangerous Snakes - Volume I: From the fast-lightning Black Mamba to the insidious Hook-nosed Sea Snake, through the formidable Coastal Taipan. Privately published, 252 pp. - get paper here
  • Mattison, Chris 1995. The Encyclopedia of Snakes. New York: Facts on File, 256 pp.
  • Mattison, Chris 2007. The New Encyclopedia of Snakes. Princeton University Press
  • McDowell, S.B. 1968. Affinities of the snakes usually called Elaps lacteus and E. dorsalis. Zool. J. Linnean Soc. 47: 561-578 - get paper here
  • Müller, F. 1880. Erster Nachtrag zum Katalog der herpetologischen Sammlung des Basler Museums. Verh. Naturf. Ges. Basel 7: 120-165 - get paper here
  • Müller,F. 1887. Fünfter Nachtrag zum Katalog der herpetologischen Sammlung des Basler Museums. Verh. Naturf. Ges. Basel 8: 249-296 - get paper here
  • Nagy, Zoltán Tamás; Nicolas Vidal, Miguel Vences, William R. Branch, Olivier S.G. Pauwels , Michael Wink and Ulrich Joger 2005. MOLECULAR SYSTEMATICS OF AFRICAN COLUBROIDEA (SQUAMATA: SERPENTES). African Biodiversity: Molecules, Organisms, Ecosystems. Proc. 5th Intern. Symp. Trop. Biol., pp. 221-228 - get paper here
  • Smith,A. 1826. On the snakes of Southern Africa. Edinburgh New Philos. J. 1: 248-254
  • Spawls, S., Branch, B. 1995. The Dangerous Snakes of Africa. Blandford, London, 192 pp.
  • 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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