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Tretanorhinus variabilis DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL, 1854

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
SubspeciesTretanorhinus variabilis variabilis DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854
Tretanorhinus variabilis binghami SCHWARTZ & OGREN 1956
Tretanorhinus variabilis insulaepinorum BARBOUR 1916
Tretanorhinus variabilis lewisi GRANT 1941
Tretanorhinus variabilis wagleri JAN 1863 
Common NamesE: Caribbean Watersnake, Caribbean Water Snake
G: Karibische Wasserschlange 
SynonymTretanorhinus variabilis DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854: 349
Tretanorhinus variabilis — BOULENGER 1893: 282
Helicops variabilis — GARMAN 1884: 33
Tretanorhinus variabilis — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 628
Tretanorhinus variabilis — WALLACH et al. 2014: 736

Tretanorhinus variabilis binghami SCHWARTZ & OGREN 1956
Tretanorhinus variabilis binghami — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988

Tretanorhinus variabilis insulaepinorum BARBOUR 1916
Tretanorhinus insulae-pinorum BARBOUR 1916
Tretanorhinus variabilis insulaepinorum — WOOD 1939
Tretanorhinus variabilis insulaepinorum — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988

Tretanorhinus variabilis lewisi GRANT 1941
Tretanorhinus variabilis lewisi GRANT 1941: 46
Tretanorhinus variabilis lewisi — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988

Tretanorhinus variabilis variabilis DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854
Tretanorhinus variabilis var. adnexus BOCOURT 1891
Tretanorhinus variabilis var. cubanus BOCOURT 1895 (nom. subst. pro adnexus)
Tretanorhinus variabilis variabilis — GRANT 1946: 104
Tretanorhinus gaigeae GRANT 1946: 104
Tretanorhinus variabilis variabilis — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988

Tretanorhinus variabilis wagleri JAN 1863
Helicops wagleri JAN 1863: 248
Tretanorhinus variabilis wagleri — GRANT 1946: 103
Tretanorhinus variabilis wagleri — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988 
DistributionCuba, Isla de la Juventud, Cayman I

variabilis: Cuba, from La Habana Prov. in the west, east into Guantánamo Prov. (except for region about Sierra Maestra, Granma Prov.). Type locality: Unknown.

binghami: Cuba, Granma Prov., lowlands and lower foothilîs of Sierra Maestra. Type locality: Finca Bucares, 22 km S Bueycito, in the Rio Yao, Granma Province, Cuba.

insulaepinorum: Isla de la Juventud; Type locality: Isla de la Juventud.

lewisi: Cayman Is.: Grand Cayman I.; Type locality: North Side, Grand Cayman Island, Cayman Islands.

wagleri: Cuba, Pinar del Rio Province. Type locality: Brasil (in error)  
Reproductionoviparous 
TypesSyntypes: MNHN-RA 7161 and MNHN-RA 7346 (2 syntypes)
Syntypes: MNHN 7349, 7350 [adnexus]
Holotype: CAS-SUR 14440 [gaigeae]
Holotype: NCSM 84101 (was: ChM 55.1.61 = Charleston Museum) [binghami]
Holotype: MCZ 44890 [lewisi]
Holotype: CM 311 [insulaepinorum]
Holotype: unlocated [wagleri] 
DiagnosisDescription (genus): Dorsal scales keeled, striate, pitless, reducing by dropping the para-vertebrals, 21-17; subcaudals double; anal double; head scales normal with at times two loreals and at times one or three prefrontals; internasals small; pupil circular to slightly oval; maxillary teeth about 27, subequal; hemipenis single or slightly bilobed; calyculate area capitate; sulcus forks within the calyculate area; four basal hooks; between hooks and calyculate area about four cross rows (about ten longitudinal rows) of rather uniform smaller spines; posterior hypapophyses present, low.
The hemipenis is most like that of some of the forms of the Rhadinaea-
Coniophanes-Trimetopon series. The dentition, the dorsal scales, and the hypapophyses are similar to those of Ninia (Tretanorhinus has more maxillary teeth). These similarities may be an indication of relationships. There is also a resemblance in hemipenis and hypapophyses to Amastridium, but Amastridium has only two basal hooks on the hemipenis, and is very different in dentition. In dentition and in hemipenis there is close similarity with the endemic central upland genus Hydromorphus (Dunn 1939).

DESCRIPTION (species): ventrals 152-168; subcaudals 48-76; dorsal scales smooth; dorsal scales at midbody 19 or 21; supralabials usually 8/8; infralabials usually 10/10; preoculars 1/1, 2/2, or 3/3; postoculars 2/2; temporals 1+2/1+2; loreals usually 1/1. Dorsal ground color gray to dark brown; with or without blackish brown dorsal crossbars (complete or alternating) to tip or middle of scale row 3,4,5,6, or 7; with or without narrow, black line on scale rows 1 or 1 and 2 (scale rows 1 and 2 sometimes cream colored); with or without row of black spots on scale row 3 and/or 4; head dark brown; supralabials with or without whitish to yellowish suffusions; infralabials, mental, and chin shields mayor may not be yellow to cream with darker suffusions; venter slate to brown, speckled white to yellow (Schwartz & Henderson 1991: 628). 
CommentSynonymy: Grant 1946 suspected that T. insulaepinorum is a synonym of T. wagleri.

For illustrations see Barbour and Ramsden 1919, Neill 1965, Petzold 1967, Petzold 1969.

Type species: Tretanorhinus variabilis DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854: 349 is the type species of the genus Tretanorhinus DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854.

Comparisons: see Vásquez-Restrepo 2020 for a comparison of all species (except variabilis).

Habitat: T. v. gaigae is “probably confined to brackish water” (Grant 1946: 117). 
References
  • Barbour, T. 1916. The reptiles and amphibians of the Isle of Pines. Annals of the Carnegie Museum 10 (1-2): 297-308. - get paper here
  • Barbour, T. and C. T. Ramsden. 1919. The herpetology of Cuba. Mem. Mus. Comp. Zool., Harvard Coll. 47: 69-213. - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Duméril, A.M.C., G. BIBRON & A.H.A. DUMÉRIL 1854. Erpétologie générale ou Histoire Naturelle complète des Reptiles. Vol. 7 (partie 1). Paris, xvi + 780 S. - get paper here
  • Garman,Samuel 1884. The reptiles and batrachians of North America. Mem. Mus. comp. Zool, Cambridge (Massachusetts), 8 (3): xxxiv + 185 pp. [1883] [CNAH reprint 10] - get paper here
  • Grant, C. 1946. Notes on Tretanorhinus of Cuba and the Isle of Pines. J. Dept. Agric. Puerto Rico 30 (2): 102-117
  • López-Hurtado, Yaira; L Yusnaviel García-Padrón , Adonis González, Luis M Díaz, Tomás M Rodríguez-Cabrera 2020. Notes on the feeding habits of the Caribbean Watersnake, Tretanorhinus variabilis (Dipsadidae). IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 27 (2): 147-153 - get paper here
  • Neill, W.T. 1965. Notes on aquatic snakes, Natrix and Tretanorhi nus, in Cuba. Herpetologica 21 (1): 62-67. - get paper here
  • Petzold, H.G. 1967. Some remarks on the breeding biology and the keeping of Tretanorhinus variabilis, a water snake of Cuba. Herpetologica 23(3): 242-46. - get paper here
  • Petzold, H.G. 1969. Zur Haltung and Fortpflanzungsbiologieeiniger kubanischer Schlangen im Tierpark Berlin. Salamandra 5:124-40 - get paper here
  • Rodríguez Schettino, Lourdes, Carlos A. Mancina & Vilma Rivalta González 2013. REPTILES OF CUBA: CHECKLIST AND GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTIONS. Smithsonian Herp. Inf. Serv. (144): 1-96 - get paper here
  • Schwartz, A. & Henderson, R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, 720 pp.
  • Schwartz, A. and Ogren, L.H. 1956. A collection of reptiles and amphibians from Cuba, with the descriptionof two new forms. Herpetologica 12 (2): 91-110 - get paper here
  • Vásquez-Restrepo, Juan D. 2020. Validating the Two Records of Mocquard’s Swampsnake, Tretanorhinus mocquardi Bocourt 1891 (Dipsadidae), in Colombia, with Comments on the Taxonomy of Mainland Swampsnakes. IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 27 (2): 314-317 - 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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