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Pareas iwasakii (MAKI, 1937)

IUCN Red List - Pareas iwasakii - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaPareidae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common Names 
SynonymAmblycephalus formosensis iwasakii MAKI 1937
Pareas iwasakii — TAKARA 1962
Pareas iwasakii — OTA 2000
Pareas iwasakii — WALLACH et al. 2014: 536
Pareas iwasakii — YOU et al. et al. 2015 
DistributionJapan (S Ryukyu Islands: Yaeyama Group)

Type locality: "Ishigaka-jima, Riukyu Archipelagoes. [=Ishigakishima Is., Yaeyama Group, southern Ryukyu Archipelago, extreme southern Japan, 24˚24'N, 124˚12'E].  
TypesHolotype: unlocated, a 220 mm male (Iwasaki, 26 Jan. 1937, Toriba 1993). 
CommentThis species is classified as “near threatened” in Japan (Ota 2000).

This is a snail-eating snake that seems to be more adapted to eating right-handed snails, having asymmetric mandibles.

Habitat: partly arboreal (Harrington et al. 2018). 
EtymologyNamed after Takuji Iwasaki (1869-1937), chief meteorologist at Ishigaki-jima, one of the islands in the Ryukyu Archipe1ago (1905). 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Goris, R.C. & Maeda, N. 2004. Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Japan. Krieger, Malabar, 285 pp.
  • Guo, Keji & Deng, Xuejiang 2009. A new species of Pareas (Serpentes: Colubridae: Pareatinae) from the Gaoligong Mountains, southwestern China. Zootaxa 2008: 53-60 - get paper here
  • Harrington, Sean M; Jordyn M de Haan, Lindsey Shapiro, Sara Ruane 2018. Habits and characteristics of arboreal snakes worldwide: arboreality constrains body size but does not affect lineage diversification. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 125 (1): 61–71 - get paper here
  • Hoso, M & Kakegawa, T; 2018. Pareas iwasakii (Iwasaki’s Snail-eating Snake) Diet. Herpetological Review 49 (4): 760-761 - get paper here
  • Hoso, Masaki; Takahiro Asami and Michio Hori 2007. Right-handed snakes: convergent evolution of asymmetry for functional specialization. Biology Letters 3 (2): 169-173 - get paper here
  • Maki, M. 1937. A new subspecies, Amblycephalus formosensis iwasakii, belonging to Amblycephalidae from Ishigaki-jima. Trans. Nat. hist. Soc. Formosa 27: 217-218
  • Mori,M. 1982. Japans Schlangen, Vols. 1-3 (80, 102, 123 pp.). Tokyo (Igaku-Shoin Ltd.) [bilingual edition in German and Japanese]
  • Ota H. Lin J T. Hirata T. Chen S L. 1997. Systematic review of Colubrid snakes of the genus Pareas in the East Asian islands. Journal of Herpetology 31 (1): 79-87. - get paper here
  • Ota, H. 2000. Current status of the threatened amphibians and reptiles of Japan. Popul. Ecol. 42: 5-9 - get paper here
  • Takara,T. 1962. Studies on the terrestrial snakes in the Ryukyu Archipelago [In Japanese with English summary]. Sci. Bull. Agr. Home Econ. Div., Univ. Ryukyus (9): 1-202
  • Toriba, M. 1993. Present location of the type specimens described by Maki. The Snake 25: 71-72
  • 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.
  • You, Chung-Wei; Nikolay A. Poyarkov Jr and Si-Min Lin 2015. Diversity of the snail-eating snakes Pareas (Serpentes, Pareatidae) from Taiwan. Zoologica Scripta DOI: 10.1111/zsc.12111 - get paper here
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