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Tropidophis melanurus (SCHLEGEL, 1837)

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Higher TaxaTropidophiidae, Henophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
SubspeciesTropidophis melanurus melanurus (SCHLEGEL 1837)
Tropidophis melanurus dysodes SCHWARTZ & THOMAS 1960
Tropidophis melanurus ericksoni SCHWARTZ & THOMAS 1960 
Common NamesE: Giant Trope, Wood Snake
G: Kubanische Zwergboa 
SynonymBoa melanura SCHLEGEL 1837: 399
Tropidophis melanurus — BIBRON in DE LA SAGRA 1840: 208
Tropidophis melanurus — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1844: 491
Tropidophis melanurus — JAN 1864
Ungualia [sic] melanura — GARMAN 1887: 278
Ungalia melanura — BOULENGER 1893: 111
Tropidophis melanurus melanurus — SCHWARTZ & OGREN 1956
Tropidophis melanurus — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 638
Tropidophis melanurus — MATTISON 1995: 112
Tropidophis melanurus — MCDIARMID, CAMPBELL & TOURÉ 1999: 220
Tropidophis melanurus — MATTISON 2007: 137
Tropidophis melanurus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 754

Tropidophis melanurus dysodes SCHWARTZ & THOMAS, 1960
Tropidophis melanurus dysodes — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988
Tropidophis melanurus dysodes — POWELL & HENDERSON 2012

Tropidophis melanurus ericksoni SCHWARTZ & THOMAS, 1960
Tropidophis melanurus ericksoni — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988
Tropidophis melanurus ericksoni — POWELL & HENDERSON 2012 

melanurus: throughout Cuba with exception of range of T. m. dysodes. Type locality: Cuba.

dysodes: Pinar del Rio Province, Cuba. Type locality: 1 km N La Coloma, Pinar del Rio Province, Cuba.

ericksoni: Isla de la Juventud.Type locality: Bibijagua, Isla de la Juventud.  
TypesHolotype: Unlocated (SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1988)
Holotype: AMNH 82893 [dysodes]
Holotype: AMNH 82897 [ericksoni] 
CommentSubspecies: Tropidophis melanurus bucculentus COPE, 1868 has been elevated to full species status.

For illustrations see Cooper, 1958; Schwartz and Thomas, 1960; Petzold, 1963; Petzold, 1969; Schwartz and Henderson, 1985.

Type species: Boa melanura SCHLEGEL 1837: 399 is the type species of the genus Tropidophis BIBRON 1840.

Habitat: partly arboreal (Harrington et al. 2018). 
  • Bailey, J. R. 1937. A review of some recent Tropidophis material. Proc. New England Zool. Club 16: 41-52.
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the snakes in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. London (Taylor & Francis), 448 pp. - get paper here
  • Brongersma, L.D. 1951. Some notes upon the anatomy of Tropidophis and Trachyboa (Serpentes). Zoologische Mededelingen 31: 107-124 - get paper here
  • Cooper, J.E. 1958. Ascent to Cueva del Aura. Maryland Nat. 28(1-4):2-16.
  • Díaz, L. M. y Cádiz, A. 2020. A new species of Tropidophis (Squamata: Tropidophiidae) and molecular phylogeny of the Cuban radiation of the genus. Novitates Caribaea (16): 1-19; doi: 10.33800/nc.vi16.222 - get paper here
  • Duméril, A. M. C. and G. Bibron. 1837. Erpétologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complete des Reptiles. Vol. 4. Libr. Encyclopédique Roret, Paris, 570 pp. - get paper here
  • Duméril, A. M. C. and G. Bibron. 1844. Erpetologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complete des Reptiles. Vol.6. Libr. Encyclopédique Roret, Paris, 609 pp. - get paper here
  • Estrada, A.R. 1998. Anfibios y Reptiles Encontrados Durante 1988 y 1989 en Cayo Paredón Grande, Archipiélago de Sabana-Camagüey, Cuba. Carib. J. Sci. 34 (1-2): 106-112
  • Fong G, Ansel, Irelis Bignotte Giró, Karell Maure García 2013. Unsuccessful predation on the toad Peltophryne peltocephala (Bufonidae) by the Cuban snake Tropidophis melanurus (Tropidophiidae). Herpetology Notes 6: 73-75 - get paper here
  • Garman, S. 1887. On West Indian reptiles in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Cambridge, Mass. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 24: 278-286. - get paper here
  • Gower, D.; Garrett, K. & Stafford, P. 2012. Snakes. Firefly Books, Buffalo, NY,<br />144 p..
  • Harrington, Sean M; Jordyn M de Haan, Lindsey Shapiro, Sara Ruane 2018. Habits and characteristics of arboreal snakes worldwide: arboreality constrains body size but does not affect lineage diversification. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 125 (1): 61–71 - get paper here
  • Hedges, S. B. and O. H. Garrido. 1992. A new species of Tropidophis from Cuba (Serpentes: Tropidophiidae). Copeia 1992 (4): 820-825 - get paper here
  • Hedges, S. Blair, Alberto R. Estrada and Luis M. Diaz 1999. New snake (Tropidophis) from western Cuba. Copeia 1999 (2): 376-381 - get paper here
  • Hedges, S.B. 2002. Morphological variation and the definition of species in the snake genus Tropidophis (Serpentes, Tropidophiidae). Bull. nat. Hist. Mus. London (Zool.) 68 (2): 83-90 - get paper here
  • Iturriaga, Manuel 2014. Autohemorrhaging behavior in the Cuban Dwarf Boa Tropidophis melanurus Schlegel, 1837 (Serpentes: Tropidophiidae). Herpetology Notes 7: 339-341 - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1864. Iconographie générale des ophidiens. 5. Livraison. J.B. Bailière et Fils, Paris - get paper here
  • Mattison, Chris 1995. The Encyclopedia of Snakes. New York: Facts on File, 256 pp.
  • Mattison, Chris 2007. The New Encyclopedia of Snakes. Princeton University Press
  • McDiarmid, R.W.; Campbell, J.A. & Touré,T.A. 1999. Snake species of the world. Vol. 1. [type catalogue] Herpetologists’ League, 511 pp.
  • O’Shea, M. 2018. The Book of Snakes. Ivy Press / Quarto Publishing, London, - get paper here
  • Petzold, H.G. 1963. Über die kubanische Zwergboa Tropidophis melanurus (Schlegel), eine selten importierte Schlange. DATZ 16 (1):16-20.
  • Petzold, H.G. 1969. Zur Haltung and Fortpflanzungsbiologieeiniger kubanischer Schlangen im Tierpark Berlin. Salamandra 5:124-40 - get paper here
  • Rodríguez-Cabrera, Tomás M.; José Rosado, Ruben Marrero, and Javier Torres 2017. Birds in the diet of snakes in the genus Tropidophis (Tropidophiidae): Do prey items in museum specimens always reflect reliable data? . IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 24 (1): 61–64 - 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
  • Schlegel, H. 1837. Essai sur la physionomie des serpens. Partie Descriptive. La Haye (J. Kips, J. HZ. et W. P. van Stockum), 606 S. + xvi - 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 Henderson, R.W. 1985. A guide to the identification of the amphibians and reptiles of the West Indies exclusive of Hispaniola. Milwaukee Public Mus., 165 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
  • Schwartz, A. and Thomas, R. 1960. Four new snakes (Tropidophis, Dromicus, Alsophis) from the Isla de Pinos and Cuba. Herpetologica 16 (2): 73-90. - get paper here
  • Seung Hoon, Cha 2012. Snake, the world most beautifull curve [in Korean]. Hownext, 304 pp. [ISBN 978-89-965656-7-3] - get paper here
  • Sjöbeck, Anders 1992. Breeding Tropidophis melanurus melanurus in captivity. Litteratura Serpentium 12 (4): 97-99 - get paper here
  • Torres J, Rodríguez-Cabrera TM 2020. Diurnal refuge sharing between species of Cuban snakes of the genus Tropidophis (Squamata: Tropidophiidae). Caribbean Herpetology, 74: 1–2 - get paper here
  • Torres, Javier; Carlos Pérez-Penichet and Orlando Torres. 2014. Predation attempt by Tropidophis melanurus (Serpentes, Tropidophiidae) on Anolis porcus (Sauria, Dactyloidae). Herpetology Notes 7: 527-529 - 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.
  • Zaher, Hussam 1994. Les Tropidopheoidea (Serpentes; Alethinophidia) sont-ils réellement monophylétiques? Arguments en faveur de leur polyphylétisme. Comptes Rendus de L Academie Des Sciences Serie III - Sciences de La Vie - Life Sciences 317 (5): 471-478
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