Boiga flaviviridis

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Boiga flaviviridis
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Colubridae
Genus: Boiga
Species:
B. flaviviridis
Binomial name
Boiga flaviviridis
Vogel & Ganesh, 2013

Boiga flaviviridis, the yellow-green cat snake, is a species of mildly-venomous snake of the family Colubridae found in India. It is a rear fanged, nocturnal, arboreal species of snake that probably feeds on lizards, frogs and small birds. It was first described in 2013.

Taxonomic comments[edit]

Till a recent study, this species was mistaken to be Beddome's cat snake and was extralimitally reported from dry forests of eastern peninsular India. New research on both museum collections and fieldwork led to its discovery as a new, distinct species.

Holotype: BMNH 1911.9.8.4, female, from Brahmapur Ganjam district, in Odisha state, India, presented by Major Frank Wall in 1911.

Paratype: MAD 1913 an adult female from Udayagiri, Nellore district, state of Andhra Pradesh, India, collected in 1913, collector unknown.

Etymology[edit]

This species is named flaviviridis (from flavus meaning yellow and viridis, meaning green in Latin) as an adjective, after its diagnostic colouration that easily serves to identify this species. As a common name, "yellow-green cat snake" was suggested.

Diagnostics[edit]

The new species can be identified as follows: medium sized species of the genus Boiga characterized by: (1) 19 dorsal scale rows around the forepart of the body and 19 dorsal scale rows at midbody; (2) 248–259 ventrals; (3) 106–109 subcaudals in females; (4) a single anal scale; (5) 8 (rarely 9) supralabials with SL 3–5 touching the orbit; (6) preocular reaching upper surface of the head; (7) 2 temporals in the first row, 3 temporals in the second row with a total of 4 rows of temporal scales; (8) a yellowish-green dorsal ground colour; (9) more than 90 faint, hardly visible dark bands; (10) the dorsal part of the head with only faint ornamentations; (11) a postocular stripe ending at the jaw angle; (12) an uniform venter with no speckles or lines (13) relative tail length in females from 0.180 to 0.200. The new species can easily be recognized by the combination of high number of ventral scales together with the colouration especially the uniform belly and a proportionately shorter tail than in other species of this group.

Geographic range[edit]

This species of snake is found in India. It is so far known from the dry forests of eastern peninsular India, including Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Odisha states.

References[edit]

  • GERNOT VOGEL & S.R. GANESH 2013. A new species of cat snake (Reptilia: Serpentes: Colubridae: Boiga) from dry forests of eastern Peninsular India. Zootaxa 3637 (2): 158–168.
  • Khandal, Dharmendra, Sachin Rai and Vivek Sharma. 2016. Geographic Distribution: Boiga flaviviridis (Yellow-green Cat Snake). Herpetological Review 47 (1): 82.
  • Kwet, Axel 2014. Liste der im Jahr 2013 neu beschriebenen Reptilien. Terraria-Elaphe 2014 (3): 56-67.
  • Sharma, Vivek, Roheet Karoo and Umesh Zire. 2016. Geographic Distribution: Boiga flaviviridis (Yellow-green Cat Snake). Herpetological Review 47 (1): 82.