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Lycodon gongshan VOGEL & LUO, 2011

IUCN Red List - Lycodon gongshan - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesChinese: Gongshan Baihuanshe
E: Gongshan Wolf Snake
German: Gongshan Wolfszahnnatter 
SynonymLycodon gongshan VOGEL & LUO 2011
Lycodon gongshan — WALLACH et al. 2014: 394 
DistributionChina (Yunnan: Gongshan County, Longling County)

Type locality: “Bapo, Gongshan, China”, today Dulongjiang Township, Gongshan County, Yunnan Province, People’s Republic of China.”  
TypesHolotype: KIZ 730034 adult male (tail dissected). Collector unknown. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. A species of the genus Lycodon characterized by: (1) a loreal scale entering the orbit; (2) 17 dorsal scale rows anteriorly and at midbody; (3) upper and vertebral dorsal rows (6–12) are keeled; (4) 210–216 ventrals in males, and 215 ventrals in the single female known; (5) 95–96 subcaudals in males, and 92 subcaudals in the single female; (6) relative tail length ca. 0.231–0.232 in males, and 0.215 in the female; (7) 8 supralabials with SL 4– 6 touching the orbit; (7) 32–40 pale bands on a dark body; (8) breadth of the anteriormost band 1 dorsal scale middorsally, 3–4 ventrals, midventrally; (9) belly with discreet bands throughout, and (10) dark ventrals on the throat.

This species can be recognized by its long tail (tail length/total length 0.231–0.232 in males, 0.215 in females, vs. 0.198–0.225 in males, 0.193–0.219 in females of L. fasciatus), and the high number of subcaudals (95–96 in males, and 92 in females). Also, its anteriormost pale band is very narrow, being 1 dorsal scale broad middorsally in all 4 known specimens, vs. 1–5 dorsals (x = 2.5 in 62 specimens) in the L. fasciatus group, with the anteriormost band starting at ventral 4–7 (vs. usually ventral 10-16 in L. fasciatus and in species of the L. ruhstrati group). Fur- thermore, the new species has a dark throat, whereas in L. fasciatus usually the throat is white (except in some individuals from parts of Yunnan; Vogel et al. unpublished data). More detailed comparisons with other species of the genus Lycodon are provided by VOGEL & LUO 2011. 
CommentSimilar species: L. fasciatus 
EtymologyThe specific name refers to the area of origin of this species, Gongshan County. 
  • GRISMER, L. LEE; EVAN S.H. QUAH, SHAHRUL ANUAR M.S,, MOHD ABDUL MUIN, PERRY L. WOOD, JR & SITI AZIZAH MOHD NOR 2014. A diminutive new species of cave-dwelling Wolf Snake (Colubridae: Lycodon Boie, 1826) from Peninsular Malaysia. Zootaxa 3815 (1): 051–067 - get paper here
  • Guo, Peng; Guanghui Zhong; Qin Liu; Fei Zhu; Cao Li; Ping Wang; Rong Xiao; Ming Fang and Xin Fu 2015. Phylogenetic position of Lycodon gongshan Vogel and Luo, 2011, a snake endemic to China (Reptilia: Colubridae). Amphibia-Reptilia 36 (2): 165-169, DOI: 10.1163/15685381-00002985 - get paper here
  • Janssen HY, Pham CT, Ngo HT, Le MD, Nguyen TQ, Ziegler T 2019. A new species of Lycodon Boie, 1826 (Serpentes, Colubridae) from northern Vietnam. ZooKeys 875: 1-29 - get paper here
  • Vogel, G. & Luo, J. 2011. A new species of the genus Lycodon (Boie, 1826) from the southwestern mountains of China (Squamata: Colubridae). Zootaxa 2807: 29–40 - get paper here
  • VOGEL, GERNOT; PATRICK DAVID 2019. A new species of the Lycodon fasciatus complex from the Khorat Plateau, eastern Thailand (Reptiles, Squamata, Colubridae). Zootaxa 4577 (3): 515–528 - 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.
  • Wang, Kai; Jinlong Ren, Hongman Chen, Zhitong Lyu, Xianguang Guo Ke Jiang, Jinmin Chen, Jiatang Li, Peng Guo, Yingyong Wang, Jing Che 2020. The updated checklists of amphibians and reptiles of China. Biodiversity Science 28 (2): 189-218 - get paper here
  • ZHANG, JUN; KE JIANG, GERNOT VOGEL & DINGQI RAO 2011. A new species of the genus Lycodon (Squamata, Colubridae) from Sichuan Province, China. Zootaxa 2982: 59–68 - get paper here
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