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Psammophis jallae PERACCA, 1896

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Higher TaxaPsammophiidae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Jalla's Sand Snake 
SynonymPsammophis jallae PERACCA 1896: 2
Psammophis rohani ANGEL 1921
Psammophis longirostris FITZSIMONS 1932: 38
Psammophis jallae — AUERBACH 1987: 167
Psammophis jallae — BROADLEY 1998
Psammophis jallae — BROADLEY et al. 2003: 163
Psammophis jallae — WALLACH et al. 2014: 576
Psammophis jallae — BRANCH et al. 2019 
DistributionNE Namibia, Botswana, NE Republic of South Africa, Zimbabwe,
SE Angola, W Zambia, S Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire)  
TypesTypes: MRSN (= MSNTO) R1633, R1871 
DiagnosisDescription: (108 specimens examined) Nostril pierced between 3 (rarely 2) nasals, upper posterior with a posterior prolongation; preocular 1, in broad contact with frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 1/2+3, 2+2 or 2+3; supralabials 7 (rarely 6 or 8), third & fourth (rarely fourth & fifth) entering orbit; infralabials 9 (rarely 8 or 10), the first 4 (very rarely 3 or 5) in contact with anterior sublinguals; dorsal scales in 15-15-13 rows; ventrals 154-175; cloacal shield divided; subcaudals 84-112. Brandstätter (1995, Fig. 44) has published a SEM micrograph of a dorsal scale from NMZB 7531 from Zimbabwe.
Dark brown to light grey-brown above, uniform, or with the snout and supraoculars paler brown and a pair of pale dorsolateral stripes on scale rows 4 and 5, bordered with black above, there may be a vertebral series of pale spots at the base of each scale; lateral scales usually with pale red-brown to chestnut centres. Supralabials, outer scale row and ventrum white or yellow; anterior infralabials, sublinguals and gulars usually suffused with bluegrey mesially, forming a symmetrical pattern, this dark suffusion may extend onto the throat, which is often suffused with brick red mesially [from BROADLEY 2002]. 
CommentDistribution: see map in BROADLEY 2002: 88 (Fig. 2).

Synonymy: Van Wallach (pers. comm.). 
EtymologyNamed after Rev. Luigi Jalla, Italian missionary in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) who also collected reptiles and amphibians. 
  • Auerbach, R.D. 1987. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Botswana. Mokwepa Consultants, Botswana, 295 pp.
  • Bates, M.F.; Branch, W.R., Bauer, A.M.; Burger, M., Marais, J.; Alexander, G.J. & de Villliers, M.S. (eds.) 2014. Atlas and Red List of the Reptiles of South Africa, Lesotho, and Swaziland. Suricata 1. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, 512 pp.
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • BRANCH, WILLIAM R.; NINDA BAPTISTA, CHAD KEATES, SHELLEY EDWARDS 2019. Rediscovery, taxonomic status, and phylogenetic relationships of two rare and endemic snakes (Serpentes: Psammophiinae) from the southwestern Angolan plateau. Zootaxa 4590 (3): 342–366 - get paper here
  • Broadley, D. & Blaylock 2013. The Snakes of Zimbabwe and Botswana. Chimaira, Frankfurt, 387 pp. [book review in Sauria 35 (2): 59 and Copeia 2014: 388] - get paper here
  • Broadley, D.G. 1959. The herpetology of Southern Rhodesia. Part I--the snakes. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 120 (1): 1-100 [reprint 1972] - get paper here
  • Broadley, D.G. 1962. On some reptile collections from the North-Western and North-Eastern Districts of Southern Rhodesia 1958-1961, with descriptions of four new lizards. Occ. Pap. Nat. Mus. South. Rhodesia 26 (B): 787-843
  • Broadley, D.G. 1977. A review of the genus Psammophis in southern Africa (Serpentes: Colubridae). Arnoldia 8 (12): 1-29
  • Broadley, D.G. 1998. The reptilian fauna of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Congo-Kinshasa). In: Schmidt, K.P. and Noble, G.K., Contributions to the Herpetology of the Belgian Congo... [reprint of the 1919 and 1923 papers]. SSAR Facsimile reprints in Herpetology, 780 pp.
  • Broadley, D.G. 2002. A review of the species of Psammophis Boie found south of Latitude 12° S (Serpentes: Psammophiinae). African Journal of Herpetology 51 (2): 83-119 - get paper here
  • Broadley, D.G.; Doria, C.T. & Wigge, J. 2003. Snakes of Zambia. An Atlas and Field Guide. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt, 280 pp. [review in Sauria 26 (3): 21]
  • Chifundera, K. 1990. Snakes of Zaire and their bites. Afr. Stud. Monogr. (Kyoto) 10(3): 137-157.
  • Chippaux, Jean-Philippe & Kate Jackson 2019. Snakes of Central and Western Africa. Johns Hopkins University Press, 448 pp. [detaileld review in HR 51 (1): 161] - get paper here
  • Conradie W and Branch WR. 2016. The herpetofauna of the Cubango, Cuito, and lower Cuando river catchments of south-eastern Angola. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 10 (2) [Special Section]: 6–36 - get paper here
  • CONRADIE, WERNER; NINDA L. BAPTISTA, LUKE VERBURGT, CHAD KEATES, JAMES HARVEY, TIMOTEO JULIO & GOTZ NEEF. 2021. Contributions to the herpetofauna of the Angolan Okavango-Cuando-Zambezi river drainages. Part 1: Serpentes (snakes). Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 15(2): 244–278. - get paper here
  • FitzSimons, V. 1932. Preliminary descriptions of new forms of South African Reptilia and Amphibia, from the Vernay-Lang Kalahari Expedition, 1930. Annals Transvaal Mus. 15 (1): 35-40 - get paper here
  • FitzSimons, V.F.M. 1974. A field guide to the snakes of Southern Africa. 2nd edition. COLLINS, 221 pp. [first ed. 1970]
  • Herrmann, H.-W.; W.R. Branch 2013. Fifty years of herpetological research in the Namib Desert and Namibia with an updated and annotated species checklist. Journal of Arid Environments 93: 94–115 - get paper here
  • Marques, Mariana P.; Luis M. P. Ceríaco , David C. Blackburn , and Aaron M. Bauer 2018. Diversity and Distribution of the Amphibians and Terrestrial Reptiles of Angola -- Atlas of Historical and Bibliographic Records (1840–2017). Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. (Ser. 4) 65: 1-501 (Supplement II)
  • Peracca, M. G. 1896. Retili et Anfibi raccolti a Kazungula e sulla strada da Kazungula a Buluwaio dal Rev. Luigi Jalla, Missionario Valdese nell’ alto Zambese. Boll. Mus. Zool. Comp. Anat. Univ. Torino 11 (255): 1-4
  • Schleicher, Alfred 2020. Reptiles of Namibia. Kuiseb Publishers, Windhoek, Namibia, 271 pp.
  • Shine, Richard; William R. Branch, Jonathan K. Webb, Peter S. Harlow, and Terri Shine 2006. Sexual Dimorphism, Reproductive Biology, and Dietary Habits of Psammophiine Snakes (Colubridae) from Southern Africa. Copeia 2006 (4): 650-664 - 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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