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Psammophylax tritaeniatus (GÜNTHER, 1868)

IUCN Red List - Psammophylax tritaeniatus - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaPsammophiidae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
SubspeciesPsammophylax tritaeniatus tritaeniatus (GÜNTHER 1868)
Psammophylax tritaeniatus subniger LAURENT 1956 
Common NamesE: Three-lined Grass Snake, Striped Skaapsteker
G: Gestreifter Shaapsteker 
SynonymRhagerrhis tritaeniatus GÜNTHER 1868: 423
Rhagerhis tritaeniata — BOCAGE 1896: 112
Psammophylax tritaeniatus fitzgeraldi BROADLEY 1960
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — AUERBACH 1987: 163
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — BROADLEY 1998
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — BROADLEY et al. 2003: 154
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 594
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — BATES et al. 2014: 382
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — SPAWLS et al. 2018: 443

Psammophylax tritaeniatus subniger LAURENT 1956: 237
Psammophylax tritaeniatus subniger — KEATES et al. 2019

Psammophylax tritaeniatus tritaeniatus (GÜNTHER 1868)
Rhagerrhis tritaeniatus GÜNTHER 1868: 423
Psammophylax tritaeniatus — PETERS 1869: 661
Coronella tritaeniata GÜNTHER 1881: 329
Trimerorhinus tritaeniatus — BOULENGER 1896: 139 (part.)
Trimerorhinus tritaeniatus — ANGEL 1925
Cerastes tritaeniatus tritaeniatus — MERTENS 1930: 14
Psammophylax tritaeniatus tritaeniatus — BROADLEY 1959
Psammophylax tritaeniatus tritaeniatus — FITZSIMONS 1966
Psammophylax tritaeniatus tritaeniatusr — KEATES et al. 2019 
DistributionNE Namibia, N Botswana, Zimbabwe, NE Republic of South Africa, Angola, S Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, S Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Zambia, Mozambique

Type locality: Southern Africa.

subniger: SE Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Burundi, Rwanda; Type locality: “Kipiri, 2000 m [elevation], plateau des Marungu, Terr. de Baudouinville, Tanganika”

vanoyei: NE Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire); Type locality: “Blukwa, Terr. de Djugu, Ituri”  
TypesType: BMNH 1946.1.2.78 (and possibly additional specimens).
Holotype: RMCA (= MRAC = RGMC) 18597, male [subniger]
Holotype: RMCA (= MRAC = RGMC) 17001, male [vanoyei] 
CommentP. t. festivus, subniger, vanoyei fide Jirka Schmidt (pers. comm.). The status of the subspecies seems unclear.

Synonymy partly after FITZSIMONS 1966 and Branch & Bates 2018. 
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  • Auerbach, R.D. 1987. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Botswana. Mokwepa Consultants, Botswana, 295 pp.
  • Baptista NL, António T, Branch WR. 2019. The herpetofauna of Bicuar National Park and surroundings, southwestern Angola: a preliminary checklist. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 13(2) [Special Section]: 96–130 (e203) - get paper here
  • Bates, Michael F. and Rick Nuttall. 2013. A case of death-feigning in the Stripted Grass Snake Psammophylax tritaeniatus (Günther), with a review on the occurrence of this phenomenon in southern and eastern African snakes. African Herp News (60): 5-9 - get paper here
  • Bauer, Aaron M.; Branch, William R. & Haacke, Wulf D. 1993. The herpetofauna of the Kamanjab area and adjacent Damaraland, Namibia. Madoqua (Windhoek) 18 (2): 117-145.
  • Bocage, J. V. Barboza du. 1896. Mammiferos, aves e reptis da Hanha, no sertào de Benguella. Jornal de Sciencias Mathematicas, Physîcas e Naturaes, Lisboa (2) 14: 105-114. - get paper here
  • Bocage, J.V.B. de 1897. Mammiferos, aves e reptis da Hanha, no sertào de Benguella. (Segunda lista). Jornal de Sciencias Mathematicas, Physîcas e Naturaes, Lisboa (2) 14: 207-211
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  • 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. 1966. A check-list, with syntopic keys, to the snakes of southern Africa. Annals Transvaal Museum 25 (3): 35-79 - get paper here
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  • Günther, A. 1868. Sixth account of new species of snakes in the collection of the British Museum. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (4) 1: 413-429 - get paper here
  • Haagner, G. V. 1986. Life History Note: Psammophylax tritaeniatus: Reproduction. J. Herp. Assoc. Africa (32): 35-35 - get paper here
  • Haagner,G.V.; Branch,W.R. & Haagner,A.J.F. 2000. Notes on a collection of reptiles from Zambia and adjacent areas of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Annals of the Eastern Cape Museum 1: 1 – 25
  • Hartmann, Jörg 1998. Der Gestreifte Shaapsteker (Psammophylax tritaeniatus) - Porträt einer Rarität in der Terraristik. Elaphe 6 (1): 17-22
  • 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
  • Keates, C, Conradie, W, Greenbaum, E, Edwards, S. 2019. Snake in the grass: Genetic structuring of the widespread African grass snake (Psammophylax Fitzinger 1843), with the description of a new genus and a new species. J Zool Syst Evol Res. 57: 1039– 1066 - get paper here
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