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Rhadinaea bogertorum MYERS, 1974

IUCN Red List - Rhadinaea bogertorum - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Oaxacan Graceful Brown Snake
S: Hojarasquera de Oaxaca 
SynonymRhadinaea bogertorum MYERS 1974: 59
Rhadinaea bogertorum — LINER 1994
Rhadinaea bogertorum — LINER 2007
Rhadinaea bogertorum — WALLACH et al. 2014: 639 
DistributionMexico (Oaxaca)

Type locality: 10.5 miles (16.8 kilometers) by road north of Cerro Pelon, near km.123 on Tuxtepec Road, 6650 fee (2027 meters elevation), Sierra de Juairez, Oaxaca, Mexico.  
TypesHolotype: AMNH 100907, an adult male 
DiagnosisDIAGNOSIS: Rhadinaea bogertorum seems to be most closely related to, and likely to be confused with, one or two other species of the decorata group that also occur in the state of Oaxaca. It most nearly resembles the geographically isolated R. myersi, as both species have only a weak indication of a narrow, dark vertebral line, and a gray or black lateral line that may be interrupted by a pale spot on the upper part of each scale in row 4. But R. bogertorum has a greater number of ventral plates, and the male organ has a larger capitulum, which comprises at least half the length of the hemipenis (sulcate side) rather than about two-fifths as in myersi. Rhadinaea bogertorumis distinguished from the neighboring R. macdougalli in having more ventrals, a slightly different pattern, and probably in larger size and more maxillary teeth (Myers 1974: 59).

Coloration: The holotype is mostly dark grayish brown, but the paratype is a light brown and has a noticeable grayish tinge only on its sides. The vertebral row and adjacent edges of the paravertebral rows are occupied by a gray streak that starts on the neck and extends onto the tail, where it becomes a thin, weak line that goes nearly to the end of the tail. This median streak is paler on the paratype, which, however, has tiny spots of the dark pigment on the bases of the vertebral scales, especially on the neck. The vertebral gray line is least conspicuous on the holotype because this specimen has the median seven scale rows dark grayish brown, which fades to a light brown in row 5 and a part of row 4. A dark lateral line occupies row 4, except for a light brown, posterodorsal section of each scale, and overlaps onto the extreme lower edges of scales in row 5. This lateral line is black in the holotype but in the paratype it is light gray, except for tiny black dashes along the lower edge of the fifth row. The lateral line disappears toward the end of the tail. The sides below the lateral dark line are grayish brown, and in the paratype the sides are slightly darker than the dorsal surface. The grayish ground color low on the side of the tail (row 1) appears as a relatively pale line because it is bordered by the dark lateral line above and dark subcaudal tips below. The top of the head is dark (holotype) or light brown and lacks a pair of parietal dots. An indefinite whitish line extends along the canthus rostralis and through the top of the eye, becoming a conspicuous white line that slants slightly posteroventrally to a point above the corner of the mouth, then rising posteriorly to the neck and becoming continuous with the pale brown streak above the lateral dark line. The pale streak is widest and most conspicuous on the neck, where it occupies part of row 6 as well as row 5 and the adjacent spots in row 4. There are fragments of a black edge above the white postocular line, and there is faint, dark edging above the pale stripe on the neck. A black line crosses the rostral of the paratype and is continuous with a dark stripe alongside of the head, whereas the holotype has only a few dark dots on the rostral and the dark stripe starts on the anterior edge of the nasal plate. The dark stripe extends through the eye and below the postocular white line, crossing the corner of the mouth to the neck, where it is continuous with the lateral dark line. The lateral head stripe is mainly black except on the loreal and prefrontal where it is mostly brown; the stripe is narrow where it crosses the corner of the mouth and, although it broadens to the width of about two and one-half scales immediately behind the mouth, it shortly reduces in width to the confines of the fourth scale row. The supralabials are white below the lower edge of the lateral dark stripe, with a few tiny black dots on the first two labials of the holotype and a larger black dot on the first labial of the paratype. The holotype has a few dark dots on the mental and first several infralabials; the para type has a few inconspicuous specks on the mental and first pair of infralabials. The underside of the head and the venter are yellowish white. The ventrals under the neck have a small, distinct blackish spot on each side, but posteriorly the tips of the ventrals are grayish brown and the dark spots are diffuse and have less contrast. The outer ends of the subcaudals are blackish. The paratype has a black line of pigment across the anterior lip of the partly extruded cloaca, and also a thin, zigzag dark line on the ventral midline of the base of the tail. A color transparency shows that the paratype in life was overall a rich, almost reddish, brown; the "white" line on the head was pale brown, turning light brown along row 5 on the body; the supralabials were pale yellowish and the top of the iris was pale, reddish brown (Myers 1974: 63). 
CommentGroup: Rhadinaea decorata group 
  • Casas-Andreu, G., F.R. Méndez-De la Cruz and X. Aguilar-Miguel. 2004. Anfibios y Reptiles; pp. 375–390, in A.J.M. García-Mendoza, J. Ordoñez and M. Briones-Salas (ed.). Biodiversidad de Oaxaca. Instituto de Biología, UNAM-Fondo Oaxaqueño para la Conservación de la Naturaleza-World Wildlife Fund, México, D. F.
  • Heimes, P. 2016. Snakes of Mexico. Chimaira, Frankfurt, 572 pp
  • Liner, Ernest A. 2007. A CHECKLIST OF THE AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES OF MEXICO. Louisiana State University Occasional Papers of the Museum of Natural Science 80: 1-60 - get paper here
  • Mata-Silva, Vicente, Jerry D. Johnson, Larry David Wilson and Elí García-Padilla. 2015. The herpetofauna of Oaxaca, Mexico: composition, physiographic distribution, and conservation status. Mesoamerican Herpetology 2 (1): 6–62 - get paper here
  • Myers, C.W. 1974. The systematics of Rhadinaea (Colubridae), a genus of New World snakes. Bull. Amer. Mus. nat. Hist. 153 (1): 1-262 - get paper here
  • Ramirez-Bautista, Aurelio; Mancilla-Moreno, Mario; Van Breukelen, Frank 1998. Morphological Variation and Relationship of Rhadinaea bogertorum (Squamata: Colubridae), an endemic Snake of the Sierra De Juarez, Oaxaca, Mexico. Bull. Maryland Herp. Soc. 34 (4): 99 - get paper here
  • Simón-Salvador PR, Arreortúa M, Flores CA, Santiago-Dionicio H, González-Bernal E 2021. The role of Indigenous and Community Conservation Areas in herpetofauna conservation: a preliminary list for Santa Cruz Tepetotutla, Oaxaca Mexico. ZooKeys 1029: 185-208 - 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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