Trimeresurus elegans

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Trimeresurus elegans
Protobothrops elegans.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Subfamily: Crotalinae
Genus: Trimeresurus
Species: T. elegans
Binomial name
Trimeresurus elegans
(Gray, 1849)
  • Craspedocephalus elegans
    Gray, 1849
  • Trimeresurus luteus
    Boettger, 1895
  • Lachesis luteus Boulenger, 1896
  • Lachesis lutea – Boettger, 1898
  • Trimeresurus elegans
    Stejneger, 1907
  • Trimeresurus mucrosq[uamatus]. elegans – Mell, 1929
  • Protobothrops elegans
    – Kraus, Mink & Brown, 1996[1]
Common names: elegant pitviper,[2] Sakishima habu (サキシマハブ?),[3] elegant tree viper.[4]

Trimeresurus elegans is a venomous pitviper species endemic to Japan in the southern Ryukyu Islands. No subspecies are currently recognized.[5]


Scalation includes 25 (sometimes 23) rows of dorsal scales at midbody, 179-192 (males) or 182-196 (females) ventral scales, 63-90 subcaudal scales, and 8 (sometimes 7 or 9) supralabial scales.[2]

During 1965-2011, 2447 snakebites from this snake are reported with one fatality.[6]

Geographic range[edit]

It is found in Japan in the southern Ryukyu Islands. The type locality is unknown. Boulenger listed it as "---- ?" while Gray's original 1849 description gives "West Coast of [North?] America." A restriction to "Ishigaki-Shima [Ryukyu Islands, Japan]" was proposed by Stejneger (1907).[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, Volume 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. ^ a b Gumprecht A, Tillack F, Orlov NL, Captain A, Ryabov S. 2004. Asian Pitvipers. GeitjeBooks. Berlin. 1st Edition. 368 pp. ISBN 3-937975-00-4.
  3. ^ Mehrtens JM. 1987. Living Snakes of the World in Color. New York: Sterling Publishers. 480 pp. ISBN 0-8069-6460-X.
  4. ^ Brown JH. 1973. Toxicology and Pharmacology of Venoms from Poisonous Snakes. Springfield, Illinois: Charles C. Thomas. 184 pp. LCCCN 73-229. ISBN 0-398-02808-7.
  5. ^ "Trimeresurus elegans". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 25 July 2008. 
  6. ^ 沖縄県における平成23 年の毒蛇咬症 沖縄県衛生環境研究所

Further reading[edit]

  • Gray, J.E. 1849. Catalogue of the Specimens of Snakes in the Collection of the British Museum. Trustees of the British Museum. London. xv + 125 pp. (Craspedocephalus elegans, p. 7.)

External links[edit]