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Liopeltis tricolor (SCHLEGEL, 1837)

IUCN Red List - Liopeltis tricolor - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Malayan Ringneck
G: Dreifarbige Halsbandnatter 
SynonymHerpetodryas tricolor SCHLEGEL 1837: 187
Liopeltis tricolor — FITZINGER 1843
Cyclophis tricolor — GÜNTHER 1858
Ablabes baliodeiroides — BLEEKER 1858
Phragmitophis tricolor — GÜNTHER 1862
Cyclophis tricolor — STOLICZKA 1873: 122
Ablabes tricolor — BOULENGER 1890
Gongylosoma tricolor — SWORDER 1922
Ablabes tricolor — LIDTH DE JEUDE 1922: 246
Liopeltis tricolor — TAYLOR 1922: 162
Liopeltis tricolor — HENDRICKSON 1966: 67
Liopeltis tricolor — MANTHEY & GROSSMANN 1997: 360
Liopeltis tricolor — COX et al. 1998: 56
Liopeltis tricolor — NGUYEN et al. 2009
Liopeltis tricolor — WALLACH et al. 2014: 386 
DistributionIndonesia (Bangka, Java, Nias, Riau Archipelago, Sumatra, Pulau We, Borneo);
Brunei Darussalam;
Malaysia (Malaya and East Malaysia);
Philippines (including Bubuan,Palawan);
Thailand, Vietnam

Type locality: Java, Indonesia  
TypesType: BMNH 1946.1.5.37 (and possibly additional specimens). 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus): small, slender snakes; head not distinct from the neck, body cylindrical, tail long, scales smooth in 15 rows throughout the body, ventrals rounded, subcaudals paired; eyes large, pupil round; hemipenis unforked, large spines present in proximal part of it; maxillary teeth small, equal, 20–22 on each side (Leviton 1964, Poyarkov et al. 2019). 
CommentType species: Herpetodryas tricolor SCHLEGEL 1837: 187 is the type species of the genus Liopeltis FITZINGER 1843.

Key: Poyarkov et al. 2019 provide a key to the species of Liopeltis.

Illustration: in CHAN-ARD et al. 2015, although the drawings of Gongylosoma longicauda and Liopeltis tricolor have been mixed up (fide PAUWELS & GRISMER 2015).

Similar species: records from Vietnam may be based on a misidentification of L. stoliczkae or another species (Hauser 2018).

Similar species: L. tiomanica; the population from Pulau Tioman has been redescribed as L. tiomanica by Som et al. 2020. 
EtymologyThe genus name ‘Liopeltis’ comes from two Greek words: the adjective leios (λεος), meaning ‘smooth’, and pelte (πέλτη, peltes), meaning ‘a small scute’ or ‘scale’. The gender of ‘pelte’ is feminine (Smith 1890), hence all generic names ending in ‘– peltis’ should be feminine. 
  • Chan-ard, T., Parr, J.W.K. & Nabhitabhata, J. 2015. A field guide to the reptiles of Thailand. Oxford University Press, NY, 352 pp. [see book reviews by Pauwels & Grismer 2015 and Hikida 2015 for corrections] - get paper here
  • Cox, Merel J.; Van Dijk, Peter Paul; Jarujin Nabhitabhata & Thirakhupt,Kumthorn 1998. A Photographic Guide to Snakes and Other Reptiles of Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Ralph Curtis Publishing, 144 pp.
  • Das, I. 2012. A Naturalist's Guide to the Snakes of South-East Asia: Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Myanmar, Borneo, Sumatra, Java and Bali. Oxford J, ohn Beaufoy Publishing - get paper here
  • David,P. & Vogel, G. 1996. The snakes of Sumatra. An annotated checklist and key with natural history notes. Bücher Kreth, Frankfurt/M.
  • Grismer, L.L. 2011. Amphibians and reptiles of the Seribuat Archipelago. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt, 239 pp.
  • Hendrickson,J.R. 1966. Observations on the fauna of Pulau Tioman and Pulau Tulai. 5. The Reptiles. Bull. Nat. Mus. Singapore 34: 53-71
  • Lang, Ruud de 2017. The Snakes of Java, Bali and Surrounding Islands. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 435 pp. - get paper here
  • Lidth DE JEUDE, T.W. VAN 1922. Snakes from Sumatra. Zoologische Mededelingen 6: 239-253. - get paper here
  • Lim, K.K.P. & Ng, H.H. 1999. The terrestrial herpetofauna of Pulau Tioman, Peninsular Malaysia. Raffles Bull. Zool., Suppl. No. 6: 131-155 - get paper here
  • Manthey, U. & Grossmann, W. 1997. Amphibien & Reptilien Südostasiens. Natur und Tier Verlag (Münster), 512 pp. - get paper here
  • Nguyen, S.V., Ho, C.T. and Nguyen, T.Q. 2009. Herpetofauna of Vietnam. Chimaira, Frankfurt, 768 pp.
  • Pauwels, Olivier S. G. and L. Lee Grismer. 2015. Book Review: A Field Guide to the Reptiles of Thailand. Herpetological Review 46 (3): 456-459 - get paper here
  • Poyarkov Jr, Nikolay A.; Tan Van Nguyen & Gernot Vogel 2019. A new species of the genus Liopeltis Fitzinger, 1843 from Vietnam (Squamata: Colubridae). Journal of Natural History, 53:27-28, 1647-1672 - get paper here
  • Rooijen, J. van & Myriam van Rooijen. 2007. The land snakes of the Santubong Peninsula, Sarawak, Borneo: A preliminary list of species with natural history notes. Russ. J. Herpetol. 14 (1):27-38 - get paper here
  • Schlegel, H. 1837. Essai sur la physionomie des serpens. Partie Descriptive. La Haye (J. Kips, J. HZ. et W. P. van Stockum), 606 S. + xvi - get paper here
  • SOM, HANNAH E.; L. LEE GRISMER, JESSE L. GRISMER, PERRY L. WOOD, JR., EVAN S. H. QUAH, RAFE M. BROWN, ARVIN C. DIESMOS, JEFFREY L. WEINELL & BRYAN L. STUART 2020. A new Liopeltis Fitzinger, 1843 (Squamata: Colubridae) from Pulau Tioman, Peninsular Malaysia. Zootaxa 4766 (3): 472–484 - get paper here
  • Stoliczka,F. 1873. Notes on some species of Malayan Amphibia and reptilia. J. Asiat. Soc. Bengal 42: 111-126 - get paper here
  • Stuebing, R.B. & INGER, R.F. 1999. A field guide to the snakes of Borneo. Natural history Publications (Borneo), Kota Kinabalu, 254 pp. [corrections in HR 31: 124]. - get paper here
  • Stuebing, R.B., Inger, R.F. & Lardner, B. 2014. A field guide to the snakes of Borneo, second edition. Natural history Publications (Borneo)
  • Taylor, E.H. 1922. The snakes of the Philippine Islands. Manila (Bureau of Printing or Science), Monograph 16: 312 pp. - get paper here
  • TEYNIÉ, ALEXANDRE; PATRICK DAVID, & ANNEMARIE OHLER 2010. Note on a collection of Amphibians and Reptiles from Western Sumatra (Indonesia), with the description of a new species of the genus Bufo. Zootaxa 2416: 1–43 - 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.
  • Weinell, Jeffrey L.; Errol Hooper, Alan E. Leviton, Rafe M. Brown 2019. Illustrated Key to the Snakes of the Philippines. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. (4) 66 (1): 1-49 - get paper here
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