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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Diaphorolepidini, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesEnglish: Mountain Shadow Snake
Spanish: Culebras Andinas de la Sombra monteses 
SynonymSynophis insulomontanus TORRES-CARVAJAL, ECHEVARRÍA, VENEGAS, CHÁVEZ & CAMPER 2015 
DistributionPeru (Huánuco)

Type locality: Peru: Departamento Huánuco: Provincia Puerto Inca: Distrito Llullapichis: Campamento Peligroso-Reserva Comunal El Sira (9°25'34.22"S, 74°44'6.60"W, 1507 m  
TypesHolotype: CORBIDI 13940 (Figs 10, 11), adult male, collected on 1 December 2013 by G. Chavez. Paratypes. Peru: Departamento San Martín: Provincia Picota: Distrito Shaboy- acu: CORBIDI 9223 adult female from Parque Nacional Cordillera Azul, Puesto de Control 16 (Chambirillo) (7°4'8.90"S, 76°0'55.20"W, 1122 m), collected on 8 May 2011 by P. J. Venegas and V. Duran and CORBIDI 10418, from same local- ity, collected on 20 February 2012 by V. Duran. Departamento Huánuco: Provincia Huánuco: Distrito Chinchao: CORBIDI 13705 adult male from Miraflores (9°40'40.60"S, 75°50'11.09"W, 1798 m), collected 8 December 2013 by V. Duran and L. Lujan. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Synophis insulomontanus can be distinguished from other species of Synophis by having a semicapitate, bilobed hemipenis with a large lateral spine at the base of the hemipenial body, and the sulcus spermaticus bifurcating on the center of the hemipenial body (Fig. 12); 19 longitudinal rows of dorsals at midbody; strongly keeled dorsals except for first row, which is keeled to a lesser extent; 151-152 ventrals in males, 147-149 in females; 108-109 subcaudals in males, 103 in females. Scutellational characters of all recognized species of Synophis are presented in Table 3 in TORRES-CARVAJAL et al. 2015.
CommentAbundance: Known only from the holotype and paratypes. 
EtymologyThe epithet insulomontanus is a noun that derives from the Latin words insulo (= isolated) and montanus (= mountain). It refers to the isolated mountain ridges in Departamento Huánuco, where the new species was discovered.

Some dictionaries called this species “Mountain fishing snakes” but there is no evidence this species eats fish (Pyron e al. 2016). 
  • PYRON, R. ALEXANDER; ALEJANDRO ARTEAGA, LOURDES Y. ECHEVARRÍA, OMAR TORRES-CARVAJAL 2016. A revision and key for the tribe Diaphorolepidini (Serpentes: Dipsadidae) and checklist for the genus Synophis. Zootaxa 4171 (2): 293–320 - get paper here
  • Torres-Carvajal O, Echevarría LY, Venegas PJ, Chávez G, Camper JD 2015. Description and phylogeny of three new species of Synophis (Colubridae, Dipsadinae) from the tropical Andes in Ecuador and Peru. ZooKeys 546: 153-179, doi: 10.3897/zookeys.546.6533 - get paper here
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