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Ovophis okinavensis (BOULENGER, 1892)

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Higher TaxaViperidae, Crotalinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Ryukyu Island Pit Viper, Okinawa pitviper 
SynonymTrimeresurus okinavensis BOULENGER 1892: 302
Lachesis okinawensis BOULENGER 1896: 549
Trimeresurus okinavensis — STEJNEGER 1907: 479
Trimeresurus okinavensis — SCLATER 1950: 116
Trimeresurus okinavensis — HARDING & WELCH 1980
Ovophis okinavensis — WELCH 1994: 95
Ovophis okinavensis — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 319
Ovophis okinavensis — GUMPRECHT et al. 2004
Ovophis okinavensis — WALLACH et al. 2014: 504 
DistributionJapan (Ryukyu Island)

Type locality: Okinawa shima.  
Reproductionviviparous. Some authors have considered this species as egg-laying (oviparous). The species deposits fully developed young surrounded by fetal membranes and little or no eggshell vestige; the babies usually leave this “shell” the day they are born (Richard Goris, personal communication). See also Kadota et al. (2011) Herpetological Review; SHINE 1994. 
TypesTypes: BMNH 1946.1.18.69-70 (and possibly additional specimens). 
  • Ackermann, L. 2016. In den Wäldern von Okinawa. Terraria-Elaphe 2016 (5): 48-51 - get paper here
  • Barbour, Thomas 1909. Notes on Amphibia and Reptilia from Eastern Asia. Proc. New England zool. Club 4: 53-78, 2 plates - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G. A. 1892. Description of new reptiles and batrachians from the Loo Choo Islands. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (6) 10: 302-304 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1896. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum, Vol. 3. London (Taylor & Francis), xiv + 727 pp. - get paper here
  • FUKUYAMA, I 2020. Ovophis okinavensis (Hime Habu). Leucism. Herpetological Review 51: 624-625.
  • Goris, R.C. & Maeda, N. 2004. Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Japan. Krieger, Malabar, 285 pp.
  • Gumprecht, A.; Tillack, F.; Orlov, N.L.; Captain, A. & Ryabow, S. 2004. Asian pitvipers. Geitje Books, Berlin, 368 pp.
  • Guo, P.; Jadin, R.C.; Malhotra, A. & Li, C. 2009. An investigation of the cranial evolution of Asian pitvipers (Serpentes: Crotalinae), with comments on the phylogenetic position of Peltopelor macrolepis. Acta Zoologica 91: 402-407 - get paper here
  • Kadota, Yohei; Kazuki Kurita & Eiji Inoue 2019. Development of Polymorphic Microsatellite Markers for the Okinawa Pit Viper, Ovophis okinavensis. Current Herpetology Aug 2019 Vol. 38, No. 2: 169-172 - get paper here
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. [type catalogue] Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • Mori,M. 1982. Japans Schlangen, Vols. 1-3 (80, 102, 123 pp.). Tokyo (Igaku-Shoin Ltd.) [bilingual edition in German and Japanese]
  • Orlov, N.; Ananjeva, N.; Barabanov, A.; Ryabov, S. & Khalikov, R. 2002. Diversity of vipers (Azemiopinae, Crotalinae) in East, Southeast, and South Asia: annotated checklist and natural history data (Reptilia: Squamata: Serpentes: Viperidae). Faun. Abh. Mus. Tierk. Dresden 23: 177-218
  • Parkinson,C.L. 1999. Molecular systematics and biogeographical history of pitvipers as determined by mitochondrial ribosomal DNA sequences. Copeia 1999 (3): 576-586 - get paper here
  • Sclater, J.A. 1950. Bionomic notes on some reptiles form Okinawa Shima, Ryukyu Islands, Japan. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (12) 3: 113-116
  • Shibata, Hiroki; Takahito Chijiwa, Shosaku Hattori, Koki Terada, Motonori Ohno, Yasuyuki Fukumaki 2016. The taxonomic position and the unexpected divergence of the Habu viper, Protobothrops among Japanese subtropical islands,. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2016.04.027 - get paper here
  • Shine, Richard 1994. Sexual size dimorphism in snakes revisited. Copeia 1994 (2): 326-346 - get paper here
  • Stejneger, LEONHARD H. 1907. Herpetology of Japan and adjacent territory. Bull. US Natl. Mus. 58: xx, 1-577 - get paper here
  • Toriba, Michihisa 1988. Karyotypes of Japanese Species of the Genus Trimeresurus. In Current Herpetology in East Asia, edited by M. Matsui, T. Hikida, and R.C. Goris. Proceedings of the Second Japan-China<br />Herpetological Symposium, Kyoto, 521 pages.
  • 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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