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Oligodon mouhoti (BOULENGER, 1914)

IUCN Red List - Oligodon mouhoti - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Cambodian Kukri Snake, Mouhot’s Kukri Snake
G: Mouhots Kukrinatter 
SynonymSimotes taeniatus var. mouhoti BOULENGER 1914: 70
Holarchus taeniatus mouhoti — COCHRAN 1930
Oligodon mouhoti — COX et al. 1998: 60
Oligodon mouhoti — NGUYEN et al. 2009
Oligodon mouhoti — WALLACH et al. 2014: 500 
DistributionCambodia, Thailand (Uthai Thani etc.), S Vietnam

Type locality: Cambodia. Type locality not given in the original description; implicitly Cambodia because the description was based on the specimen depicted by Günther (1864: Pl. 20: Fig. A) that DAVID et al. 92008) have identified.  
TypesHolotype: BMNH RR 1946.1.3.32 (adult male), from Cambodia. Collected by Henri Mouhot. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. –A species of the genus Oligodon, characterized by: (1) an average size for the group, up to about 340 mm in total length; (2) deeply forked hemipenes, not spinose but bearing two large papillae; (3) 17 dorsal scale rows at midbody, 15 before vent; (4) 14–16 maxillary teeth, the last two strongly enlarged; (5) full complement of head scales, rarely including a presubocular; (6) 8 (rarely 7) supralabials; (7) anal plate single; (8) the presence of two dark longitudinal paravertebral stripes edging a pale (yellow in life) vertebral stripe, and two narrower dorsolateral stripes; (9) two large rounded, dark brown or black blotches on the upper surface of the tail, one at its base, the other one near the tip; (10) five major markings on upper head surface: one anterior across the snout, one small longitudinal, frontal marking, two central, oblique streaks directed posteriorly downwards, and one broad, arrow-shaped nuchal blotch; and (11) base of oblique central streaks reaching the ventral scales in all examined specimens. Oligodon mouhoti differs from all other species of the group by the combination of (1) 17 scale rows at midbody, (2) the presence of a pattern similar to that of Oligodon taeniatus, namely two dark, conspicuous paravertebral and two dorsolateral stripes, and (3) two dorsal blotches on the upper surface of the tail, which are present in all examined specimens. Campden-Main (1969) discussed the differences between O. taeniatus and O. mouhoti. This author rightly referred specimens with 19 DSR to O. taeniatus and those with 17 rows plus a pair of blotches on the upper tail surface to O. mouhoti. Campden-Main also noticed differences in the length of the oblique streaks behind the corner of the mouth. According to Campden-Main (1969), the lower end of each streak reaches ventral scales in O. mouhoti, whereas it stops short of ventrals in O. taeniatus. Our data do not agree fully with this statement. The streaks do reach a ventral scale in 55 out of 105 specimens (52.4% in O. taeniatus). In O. mouhoti, the streaks reach a ventral scale in all examined specimens. This character should not be considered to be fully diagnostic to separate these two species [DAVID et al. 2008]. 
CommentHas been synonymized with Oligodon taeniatus by SMITH 1935: 208. 
EtymologyNamed after Alexandre Henri Mouhot (1826-1861), a French traveler who is best known for having rediscovered Ankhor Wat in Cambodia (ca. 1859). 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Boulenger,G.A. 1914. Descriptions of new reptiles from Siam. J. Nat. Hist. Soc. Siam 1: 67-76
  • 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
  • Cochran, D. M. 1930. The herpetological results made by Dr. Hugh Smith in Siam from 1923 to 1929. Proc. US Natl. Mus. 77 (11): 1-39 [1931] - 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. & van Rooijen, J. 2008. A revision of the Oligodon taeniatus (Günther, 1861) group (Squamata: Colubridae) , with the description of three new species from the Indochinese Region. Zootaxa 1965: 1–49 - get paper here
  • DAVID, PATRICK; TRUONG QUANG NGUYEN, TAO THIEN NGUYEN, KE JIANG, TIANBO CHEN, ALEXANDRE TEYNIÉ & THOMAS ZIEGLER 2012. A new species of the genus Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826 (Squamata: Colubridae) from northern Vietnam, southern China and central Laos. Zootaxa 3498: 45–62 - get paper here
  • NEANG, THY; L. LEE GRISMER & JENNIFER C. DALTRY 2012. A new species of kukri snake (Colubridae: Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826) from the Phnom Samkos Wildlife Sanctuary, Cardamom Mountains, southwest Cambodia. Zootaxa 3388: 41–55 - get paper here
  • Nguyen, S.V., Ho, C.T. and Nguyen, T.Q. 2009. Herpetofauna of Vietnam. Chimaira, Frankfurt, 768 pp.
  • NGUYEN, SANG NGOC; VU DANG HOANG NGUYEN, SON HONG LE, ROBERT W. MURPHY 2016. A new species of kukri snake (Squamata: Colubridae: Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826) from Con Dao Islands, southern Vietnam. Zootaxa 4139 (2): 261–273 - get paper here
  • PAUWELS, O. S., THONGYAI, K., CHANTONG, P., & SUMONTHA, M. 2021. Two new Kukri Snake species (Colubridae: Oligodon) from the Nakhon Si Thammarat Mountain Range, and addition of O. ocellatus to the fauna of Thailand. Zootaxa 4908(4): 537-557 - get paper here
  • Pauwels, O.S.G.; David, P.; Chimsunchart, C. & Thirakhupt, K. 2003. Reptiles of Phetchaburi Province, Western Thailand: a list of species, with natural history notes, and a discussion on the biogeography at the Isthmus of Kra. Natural History Journal of Chulalongkorn University 3 (1): 23-53 - get paper here
  • Thinh, Bui Bao; <br />Trinh Thi Hong; <br />Hoang Ngoc Thao; Bui Bao Thien 2018. Initial building the sample sets of amphibians and reptiles in the Hong Duc University (Viet Nam). Постулат. 2018. No12 УДК 597.6 + 598.1 - get paper here
  • Tillack, Frank 2008. Oligodon rhombifer WERNER, 1924, A JUNIOR SYNONYM OF Oligodon ancorus (GIRARD, 1857) (REPTILIA: SQUAMATA: COLUBRIDAE). Russ. J. Herpetol. 15 (2): 122-128 - get paper here
  • VASSILIEVA, ANNA B.; PETER GEISSLER, EDUARD A. GALOYAN, NIKOLAY Jr A. POYARKOV, ROBERT WAYNE VAN DEVENDER, WOLFGANG BÖHME 2013. A new species of Kukri Snake (Oligodon Fitzinger, 1826; Squamata: Colubridae) from the Cat Tien National Park, southern Vietnam. Zootaxa 3702 (3): 233–246 - 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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