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Lycodon jara (SHAW, 1802)

IUCN Red List - Lycodon jara - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Twin-spotted Wolf Snake
G: Doppelpunkt-Wolfszahnnatter 
SynonymColuber jara SHAW 1802: 525
Lycodon jara — STOLICZKA 1871
Lycophidion bipunctatum PETERS 1863: 403
Leptorhytaon jara — THEOBALD 1868: 62
Lycodon jara — BOULENGER 1893: 350
Ophites jara — WALL 1923
Lycodon jara — SMITH 1943: 260
Lycodon jara — LANZA 1999
Lycodon odishii MALLIK et al. 2014
Lycodon jara — WALLACH et al. 2014: 394 
DistributionIndia (Assam, Ganjam, Bihar, Arunachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh [S. Mukherjee, pers. comm., A. Captain, pers. comm.], Mizoram), Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Bhutan

odishii: India (Odisha, West Bengal, Assam), Nepal; Type locality: Jail Training School, Lanj ipalli, Industrial Estate, Berhampur, Odisha, India (19°18'06.1" N 84°48'53.7" E).  
ReproductionOviparous. A gravid female laid 3 eggs on 09.07.2013. Eggs were elongated and capsule shaped on laying and elongated elliptical before hatching. The egg sizes were 27 x 8.5 mm, 24 x 8.5 mm, and 27 x 7.5 mm (as reported for L. odishii).<br /><br />Hatching. First hatchling was seen on 12.08.2013 in the morning 5:30 a.m. after 34 days and the other 2 eggs hatched on 13.8.2013, i.e., the 35th day of laying. The total body lengths of hatchlings were 128, 141, and 146 mm (as reported for L. odishii). 
TypesLectotype: iconotype, described and illustrated in P. Russell (1796: 19–20, pl. 14), fide WALLACH et al. 2014: 402.
Holotype: ZMB 4886 [Lycophidion bipunctatum PETERS 1863]
Holotype: ZSI 25992, Zoological Survey of India (ZSI), Kolkata, India; male;Paratypes. ZSI 25993, Female, Juvenile from Bali Kalua Temple, Aska Road, Sarguna Sahi, Berhampur, Odisha, India (19°19'21.1" N 84°46'30.8" E) and ZSI 25994, hatchling (sex undetermined) from (19°18'06.7" N 84°48'54.3" E). Another two paratypes RMNH/BBSR 175, RMNH/BBSR 176 were collected from Jail Training School, Berhampur (19°18'06.7" N and 84°48'54.3" E) and deposited in the Regional Museum of Natural History, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India. The RMNH/BBSR 175 was the mother of ZSI 25993 and RMNH/BBSR 176 [odishii] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (odishii). Snout to vent length ranges from 100-298 mm and total length from 128 - 354 mm (Table 1 in MALLIK et al. 2014); dorsal scales in 17: 17: 15 rows, scales smooth with single apical pit; snout projected beyond the lower jaw; nasal shield single; loreal in contact with preocular, but not with eye; preocular 1; postoculars 1 or 2; 5 number of infralabials always in contact with the chin shields; 167 - 188 ventrals, not angulate laterally; anal scute divided, 52 - 64 subcaudals and divided; hemipenis forked and spinous; head glossy-grayish-blackish brown, body glossy-purplish-greenish-black in adults and grayish black in hatchling; prominent collar always present behind the head; the collar is completely white in hatchlings and white with yellow blotches at the dorsal side in adults; twin spots are present on each scale of the body except the 6 - 7 rows of scales in the collar region.
CommentDistribution: Possibly in Bhutan (Lenz 2012). See map in Chaudhuri et al. 2015: Fig. 7.

Synonymy: L. odishii has been synonymized with Lycodon jara by Chaudhuri et al. 2015. L. jara was said to have no collar in adults or juveniles while L. odishii has.

Diet: Skinks and geckos. 
EtymologyL. odishii was named after the famous classical dance form native to Odisha, i.e., "Odissi." The costumes of Odissi dance is typical and makes the dancer look more elegant and graceful. The twin yellow speckles with a white collar and yellow blotches symbolize the beauty of the Odissi dance.
The common name, Subhendu's Wolf Snake (eng.) dignifies the efforts of Subhendu Mallik, Honorary Wildlife Warden, Khordha, Department of Forest and Environment, Government of Odisha; an amateur herpetologist, who successfully Wlited the snake rescuers of the state of Odisha and spreading the awareness campaign among public on snakes and snakebite through his organization Snake Helpline, despite near fatal venomous snakebite on 5 occasions. 
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