List of snakes of Trinidad and Tobago

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A beige-colored snake slithers on a branch, among leafy vegetation.
Cascabel dormillon or Cook's tree boa (Corallus ruschenbergerii), Caroni Swamp, Trinidad

Forty-seven species of snake have been recorded in Trinidad and Tobago, making the snake population of this area the most diverse in the Caribbean. Forty-four of these snake species are found in Trinidad and twenty-one in Tobago. Many of these species are South American, most of which are present in Venezuela. Trinidad and Tobago consists of two main islands, Trinidad and Tobago, and several smaller islands. The Bocas Islands, which lie between Trinidad and Venezuela, in the Bocas del Dragón (Dragon's Mouths), consist of Chacachacare, Monos, Huevos and Gaspar Grande. Several smaller islands lie off Trinidad, but snakes have been recorded on only one of them, Caledonia Island. Snakes have been recorded on one island off Tobago, Little Tobago. Four species are venomous: two coral snake species (Micrurus spp.[note 1]), the fer-de-lance (Bothrops atrox) and the South American bushmaster (Lachesis muta). The common coral (Micrurus fulvius) is found on at least two of the Bocas Islands: Gaspar Grande and Monos. No venomous snakes inhabit Tobago.

Leptotyphlopidae[edit]

Leptotyphlopidae is a family of snakes found in North and South America, Africa, and Asia. All are fossorial and adapted to burrowing, feeding on ants and termites. One species has been recorded in Trinidad and Tobago.

Leptotyphlopidae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Leptotyphlops albifrons Ground puppy Yes[1] No No No

Typhlopidae[edit]

Typhlopidae is a family of blind snakes found mostly in the tropical regions of Africa, Asia and the Americas. Three species have been recorded in Trinidad and Tobago.

Typhlopidae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Helminthophis sp.[note 2][2] Yellow-headed ground puppy Yes[2] No No No
Typhlops brongersmianus Burrowing snake Yes[3] No No No
Typhlops trinitatus[note 3][4] Trinidad burrowing snake Yes[4] Yes[4] No No

Aniliidae[edit]

Aniliidae is a monotypic family created for the monotypic genus Anilius, which means that there is only one species in the entire family. This species is A. scytale, found in South America.

Aniliidae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Anilus scytale scytale[note 4] Burrowing false coral; rouleau Yes[5] No No No

Boidae[edit]

Boidae is a family of non-venomous snakes found in America, Africa, Europe, Asia and some Pacific Islands, containing the boas. Four species have been recorded in Trinidad and Tobago.

Boidae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Boa constrictor constrictor Macajuel, boa constrictor Yes[6] Yes[6] Yes[note 5][6] No
Corallus ruschenbergerii Cascabel dormillon; Cook's tree boa Yes[7] Yes[7] No No
Epicrates cenchria maurus Rainbow boa Yes[8] Yes[8] Yes[note 6][8] No
Eunectes murinus gigas Huille, anaconda Yes[9] No No No

Family Colubridae[edit]

Colubridae is a family of snakes comprising about two thirds of all snake species on earth. Colubrid species are found on every continent, except Antarctica.[10] Species from three subfamilies are found in Trinidad and Tobago.

Subfamily Xenodontinae[edit]

Xenodontinae is a subfamily of snakes within the family Colubridae that includes mud snakes and New World hognose snakes.

Xenodontinae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Clelia clelia clelia Black cribo, mussurana Yes[11] No Yes[note 7][11] No
Erythrolamprus aesculapii[note 8] False coral Yes[12] No No No
Erythrolamprus bizona[note 9] False coral Yes[13] No No No
Erythrolamprus ocellatus[note 10] Tobago false coral, red snake No Yes[14] No No
Helicops angulatus Water mapepire, brown-banded water snake Yes[15] No No No
Hydrops triangularis neglectus Water coral Yes[16] No No No
Liophis cobellus cobellus Mangrove snake, mangrove mapepire Yes[17] No No No
Liophis melanotus nesos[note 11] Beh belle chemin, doctor snake Yes[18] Yes[18] Yes[18] No
Liophis reginae zweifeli High wods coral Yes[19] Yes[19] No No
Oxyrhopus petola petola False coral Yes[20] Yes[20] No No
Pseudoboa neuwiedii Ratonel Yes[21] Yes[21] Yes[note 12][21] No
Siphlophis cervinus Checkerbelly Yes[22] No No No
Thamnodynastes ramonriveroi Striped swamp snake Yes[23][24] No No No
Tripanurgos compressus Mapepire de fe, false coral Yes[25] No No No

Subfamily Dipsadinae[edit]

Dipsadinae is a subfamily of snakes within the family Colubridae that includes cat-eyed snakes, night snakes, and black-striped snakes.

Dipsadinae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Atractus trilineatus Three-lined ground snake Yes[26] Yes[26] ?[note 13] No
Atractus cf. univittatus[note 14] Tobago one-lined snake No Yes[27] No No
Dipsas variegata trinitatis[note 15] Snail-eating snake Yes[28] No No No
Imantodes cenchoa cenchoa Mapepire corde violon, fiddle-string snake Yes[29] Yes[29] No No
Leptodeira annulata ashmeadi False mapepire, cat-eyed night snake Yes[30] Yes[30] Yes[note 16][30] No
Ninia atrata Red-nape snake, ring neck snake Yes[31] Yes[31] No No
Sibon nebulata nebulata Clouded snake Yes[32] Yes[32] Yes[note 17][32] No

Subfamily Colubrinae[edit]

Colubrinae is the largest subfamily of colubrids, and includes rat snakes, king snakes, milk snakes, vine snakes and indigo snakes.

Colubrinae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Chironius carinatus carinatus Machete savane, yellow machete Yes[33] No No No
Chironius multiventris septentrionalis Long-tailed machete savane Yes[34] No No No
Chironius scurrulus[note 18] Smooth machete savane Yes[35] No No No
Drymarchon corais corais Yellow-tailed cribo Yes[36] Yes[36] Yes[note 19][36] No
Leptophis ahaetulla coeruleodorus Lora, parrot snake Yes[37] Yes[37] No No
Leptophis stimsoni[note 20] Grey lora Yes[38] No No No
Mastigodryas boddaerti boddaerti Machete couesse Yes[39] No Yes[note 21][39] Yes[39]
Mastigodryas boddaerti dunni[note 22] Machete couesse No Yes[40] No Yes[40]
Oxybelis aeneus Horsewhip Yes[41] Yes[41] Yes[note 23][41] No
Pseustes poecilonotus polylepis Dos cocorite Yes[42] No No No
Pseustes sulphureus sulphureus Yellow-bellied puffing snake Yes[43] No No No
Spilotes pullatus pullatus Tigre, tigro Yes[44] Yes[44] No No
Tantilla melanocephala Black-headed snake Yes[45] Yes[45] Yes[note 24][45] No

Family Elapidae[edit]

Elapidae is a family of venomous snakes found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world, including the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. Two species are found in Trinidad and Tobago.

Elapidae
Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Micrurus lemniscatus diutius Common coral snake Yes[46] No No No
Micrurus circinalis Large coral snake Yes[47] No Yes[note 25][46][48] No

Family Viperidae[edit]

Viperidae is a family of venomous snakes found all over the world, except for Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Madagascar, Hawaii and the Arctic Circle. All have relatively long hinged fangs that permit deep penetration and injection of venom. Two species are found in Trinidad and Tobago.

Species Common name Trinidad Tobago Bocas Is. Other
Bothrops atrox Mapepire balsain, fer-de-lance Yes[49] No No No
Lachesis muta muta Mapepire zanana, mapepire z'ananas, bushmaster Yes[50] No No No

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The abbreviation "sp." indicates a single species and the abbreviation "spp." indicates multiple species.
  2. ^ Helminthophis sp. is known from a single collection. It may represent an undescribed species since none of the three described species are known from adjacent portions of Venezuela
  3. ^ Typhlops trinitatus is endemic to Trinidad and Tobago.
  4. ^ Anilus scytale scytale is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  5. ^ Boa constrictor constrictor has been recorded from the islands of Monos and Gaspar Grande.
  6. ^ Epicrates cenchria maurus has been recorded from the island of Chacachacare, but the report has not been confirmed with a specimen.
  7. ^ Clelia clelia clelia has been recorded from the island of Chacachacare, but the report has not been confirmed with a specimen.
  8. ^ Erythrolamprus aesculapii is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  9. ^ Erythrolamprus bizona is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  10. ^ Erythrolamprus ocellatus is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  11. ^ Liophis melanotus nesos has been recorded from the island of Chacachacare and is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  12. ^ Pseudoboa neuwiedii has been recorded from the island of Chacachacare.
  13. ^ Atractus trilineatus has been reported from the island of Huevos, but Boos (2001) considered this record to be doubtful.
  14. ^ Atractus cf. univittatus is known from a single collection in Tobago. It has affinities with A. univittatus, but may be an undescribed species.
  15. ^ Dipsas variegata trinitatis is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  16. ^ Leptodeira annulata ashmeadi has been recorded from the islands of Gaspar Grande and Huevos.
  17. ^ Sibon nebulata nebulata has been recorded from the island of Huevos.
  18. ^ Chironius scurrulus is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  19. ^ Drymarchon corais corais has been recorded from the island of Monos.
  20. ^ Leptophis stimsoni is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  21. ^ Mastigodryas boddaerti boddaerti has been recorded from the islands of Monos, Gaspar Grande, Chacachacare, Huevos, and Caledonia.
  22. ^ Mastigodryas boddaerti dunni has been recorded from the island of Little Tobago and is only known in Trinidad and Tobago from a single collection.
  23. ^ Oxybelis aeneus has been recorded from the islands of Chacachacare and Huevos.
  24. ^ Tantilla melanocephala has been recorded from the island of Huevos.
  25. ^ Micrurus circinalis has been recorded from the islands of Gaspar Grande (Boos 2001) and Monos (Charles & Smith 2009).

References[edit]

All information is based on Boos (2001) unless otherwise stated.

  1. ^ Boos (2001), p. 39
  2. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 43
  3. ^ Boos (2001), p. 44
  4. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 45
  5. ^ Boos (2001), p. 46
  6. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 50
  7. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 60
  8. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 64
  9. ^ Boos (2001), p. 67
  10. ^ Bauer, Aaron M. (1998). Cogger, H.G. & Zweifel, R.G., ed. Encyclopedia of Reptiles and Amphibians. San Diego: Academic Press. pp. 188–195. ISBN 0-12-178560-2. 
  11. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 85
  12. ^ Boos (2001), p. 88
  13. ^ Boos (2001), pp. 89–93
  14. ^ Boos (2001), pp. 93–95
  15. ^ Boos (2001), p. 96
  16. ^ Boos (2001), p. 97
  17. ^ Boos (2001), p. 98
  18. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 99
  19. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 100
  20. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 102
  21. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 103
  22. ^ Boos (2001), p. 106
  23. ^ Boos (2001), pp. 107–109
  24. ^ Bailey, Joseph R.; Robert A. Thomas (2006). "A revision of the South American snake genus Thamnodynastes Wagler, 1830 (Serpentes: Colubridae, Tachymenini). II. Three new species from northern South America, with further descriptions of Thamnodynastes gambotensis Pérez-Santos and Moreno and Thamnodynastes ramonriveroi Manzanilla and Sánchez". Memoria de la Fundación La Salle de Ciencias Naturales 66 (166): 7–27. 
  25. ^ Boos (2001), p. 109
  26. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 110
  27. ^ Boos (2001), p. 112
  28. ^ Boos (2001), p. 113
  29. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 114
  30. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 115
  31. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 117
  32. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 118
  33. ^ Boos (2001), p. 119
  34. ^ Boos (2001), p. 121
  35. ^ Boos (2001), p. 122
  36. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 123
  37. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 125
  38. ^ Boos (2001), p. 126
  39. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 128
  40. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 130
  41. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 133
  42. ^ Boos (2001), p. 136
  43. ^ Boos (2001), p. 138
  44. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 140
  45. ^ a b c Boos (2001), p. 142
  46. ^ a b Boos (2001), p. 144
  47. ^ Boos (2001), p. 146
  48. ^ Charles, Stevland P.; Stephen Smith (2009). "A New Locality Record for the Coral Snake, Micrurus circinalis (Reptilia: Serpentes: Elapidae) on Monos Island, Trinidad and Tobago". Living World, Journal of the Trinidad and Tobago Field Naturalists' Club: 41–42. 
  49. ^ Boos (2001), p. 156
  50. ^ Boos (2001), p. 167

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]