From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Uropeltidae
Genus: Teretrurus
Beddome, 1886
Species: T. sanguineus
Binomial name
Teretrurus sanguineus
(Beddome, 1867)[1]
Common names: purple-red earth snake.

Teretrurus is a monotypic genus created for the nonvenomous shield tail snake species, Teretrurus sanguineus, endemic to southern India. No subspecies are currently recognized.[3]

Geographic range[edit]

Found in southern India in Wynaad, Travancore (in Nalumukku at 1,350 m elevation and Oothu at 1,300 m), the Manimuthar Hills (in the Western Ghats of the Tinnevelly district) and Nyamakad (Western Ghats of the Kerala Munar Hills at 2,200 m).

The type locality given is "Anamallay forests; 4,000 feet elevation."[1]


Dorsum brown or purplish red. Ventrum red, blotched with black in some specimens.

Total length 22 cm (8 58 in).

Dorsal scales arranged in 15 rows at midbody (in 17 rows behind the head). Ventrals 120-150; subcaudals 5-10.

Eye distinct from the neighboring shields, of moderate size. Snout obtuse. Rostral small, but visible from above. Frontal longer than broad. Supraocular about as large as the eye, as long as or shorter than the prefrontals. Temporal about ½ the length of the parietals. Diameter of the body 22 to 28 times in the total length. Ventrals nearly two times as broad as the contiguous scales. In females dorsal scales of the tail smooth or faintly keeled. In males all the dorsal scales of the tail plus the last ventrals pluricarinate. Tail ending in a simple laterally compressed point.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, vol. 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. ^ The Reptile Database. www.reptile-database.org.
  3. ^ "Teretrurus". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 1 September 2007. 
  4. ^ Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the Snakes in the British Museum (Natural History). Vol. I., Containing the Families...Uropeltidæ... Trustees of the British Museum (Natural History). London. pp. 165-167.

Further reading[edit]

  • Beddome, R.H. 1867. Descriptions and figures of Five New Snakes from the Madras Presidency. Madras Quart. J. Med. Sci., 11: 14-16. [Reprint: J. Soc. Bibliogr. Nat. Sci., London, 1 (10): 315- 317, 1940.]
  • Beddome, R.H. 1876. Description of a new Species of Indian Snake of the Genus Platyplectrurus from the Wynad. Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1876: 701.
  • Beddome, R.H. 1886. An Account of the Earth-Snakes of the Peninsula of India and Ceylon. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (5) 17: 3-33.

External links[edit]