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Cerberus rynchops.jpg
New Guinea bockadam
Cerberus rynchops
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Clade: Colubroides
Family: Homalopsidae

see text

The Homalopsidae are a family of snakes which contains about 28 genera and more than 50 species. They are commonly known as Indo-Australian water snakes, mudsnakes, or bockadams. They are also known as ular air (lit. "water snake") in Indonesian. They are typically stout-bodied water snakes, and all are mildly venomous. Two monotypic genera are notable for their unusual morphology: Erpeton possesses a pair of short, fleshy appendages protruding from the front of the snout, and Bitia has uniquely enlarged palatine teeth. Cerberus species have been noted to use sidewinding to cross slick mud flats during low tide. Fordonia and Gerarda are the only snakes known to tear their prey apart before eating it, pulling soft-shelled crabs through their coils to rip them apart prior to ingestion.[1]



  1. ^ Jayne, B.C.; Voris, H.K.; Ng, P.K.L. (2002), "Herpetology: Snake circumvents constraints on prey size", Nature, 418 (6894): 143, doi:10.1038/418143a, PMID 12110878
  2. ^ Köhler, Gunther; Khaing, Khin Pa Pa; Than, Ni Lar; Baranski, Damian; Schell, Tilman; Greve, Carola; Janke, Axel; Pauls, Steffen U. (2021-01-22). "A new genus and species of mud snake from Myanmar (Reptilia, Squamata, Homalopsidae)". Zootaxa. 4915 (3): 301–325. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4915.3.1. ISSN 1175-5334.

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