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Sonora semiannulata BAIRD & GIRARD, 1853

IUCN Red List - Sonora semiannulata - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Subspecies 
Common NamesE: Ground Snake
S: Culebrilla de Tierra 
SynonymSonora semiannulata BAIRD & GIRARD 1853: 117
Lamprosoma episcopum KENNICOTT in BAIRD 1859
Homalosoma episcopum — JAN 1865
Contia isozona COPE 1866: 304
Contia semiannulata — GARMAN 1884: 90
Contia isozona — GARMAN 1884: 92
Contia episcopa — GARMAN 1884: 94
Contia episcopa — MOCQUARD 1899: 319
Contia nuchalis SCHENKEL 1901
Sonora episcopa — STICKEL 1938: 184
Sonora episcopa — FORCE 1928
Sonora semiannulata blanchardi STICKEL 1938: 185
Sonora semiannulata gloydi STICKEL 1938: 186
Sonora miniata linearis STICKEL 1938: 189 (fide SMITH 1945: 130)
Sonora semiannulata linearis — SMITH 1945: 130
Sonora bancroftae KLAUBER 1943
Sonora bancroftae — SMITH & TAYLOR 1945
Sonora episcopa — SMITH & TAYLOR 1945
Sonora semiannulata blanchardi — SMITH & TAYLOR 1945
Sonora episcopa — WEBB & ORTENBURGER 1953
Sonora episcopa — DOWLING 1959
Sonora semiannulata isozona COPE — BRADLEY & DEACON 1966 ?
Sonora semiannulata — STEBBINS 1985: 212
Sonora semiannulata — CONANT & COLLINS 1991: 214
Sonora semiannulata — LINER 1994
Sonora episcopa —SHINE 1994
Sonora semiannulata — CROTHER 2000
Sonora semiannulata semiannulata — DIXON 2000
Sonora semiannulata — CROTHER et al. 2012
Sonora semiannulata — WALLACH et al. 2014: 681
Sonora (Sonora) semiannulata — COX et al. 2018 
DistributionUSA (W Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Oklahoma, S Colorado, S Kansas, SW Missouri, SE Utah [HR 30: 55], California, Arkansas),
Mexico (N Sonora, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Tamaulipas, NW Nuevo Leon, NE Durango)

Type locality: Restricted to the Santa Rita Mountains, Arizona (originally stated "Sonora").

blanchardi: Texas

gloydi: Arizona; Type locality: Grand Canyon, Bright Angel Trail.

isozona: Nevada  
Reproductionoviparous. 
TypesHolotype: USNM 2109f
Holotype: UMMZ [blanchardi]
Holotype: UMMZ [gloydi]
Holotype: SDNHM = SDSNH [bancroftae]
Holotype: MVZ 13772 (male) [mosaueri]
Holotype: USNM 11417 [Contia isozona] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: This species is distinct from S. cincta, S. fasciata, S. straminea, S. aemula, S. annulata, S. occipitalis and S. palarostris by the lack of rostral or caudal adaptations. Sonora episcopa can be potentially confused with S. semiannulata, S. mosaeri, S. mutabilis and S. michoacanensis. The S. semiannulata species group has been historically difficult to define using morphological characteristics, and in fact it was this lack of clear colour pattern or meristic characters delimiting species that led Frost and VanDevender (1979) and Frost (1983a, 1983b) to synonymize many different species and subspecies into S. semiannulata. However, our genetic data show clear reciprocal monophyly of S. episcopa, S. taylori, S. mosaueri and S. semiannulata. Perhaps the best way to distinguish S. semiannulata from S. episcopa, S. mosaeri, S. mutabilis or S. michoacanensis is by geographic range (see below). Beyond geographic range, the expression of colour pattern in morphs that express black crossbands seems to distinguish S. episcopa and S. semiannulata. Sonora semiannulata generally has rectangular black crossbands, while S. episcopa has ovalshaped saddles. There are no other consistent meristic or qualitative characters that seem to separate these species, despite deep evolutionary divergences (Cox et al. 2018: 969).

Variation: Along with S. episcopa, S. semiannulata is one of the most variable in the genus Sonora. Populations can be polymorphic for the presence or absence of black crossbands, a red, longitudinally oriented dorsal stripe, a single nuchal band, or a black cap on the head. Bands often change in appearance from the head to the tail, becoming broken or absent on the tail and distal surfaces of the body. Ground colour can range from grey, to tan, to brown, to russet or red. Some individuals that are found in west Texas have distinctively grey crossbands, rather than the normal black crossbands (Cox et al. 2018: 969). 
CommentType species: Sonora semiannulata BAIRD & GIRARD 1853 is the type species of the genus Sonora BAIRD & GIRARD 1853.

All species of Sonora possess colour pattern polymorphism, with uniform, striped, banded, bicolour and tricolour morphs known for the different species.

Synonymy: Sonora mosaueri has been considered a synonym of Sonora semiannulata until Cox et al. 2018 revalidated it. 
References
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