Herpetology of Ethiopia and Eritrea


Our records => Colubridae Oppel, 1811; Lamprophiinae Fitzinger, 1843

Eirenis africanus (BOULENGER, 1914)

Description:

Total length 400 mm. Rostral much broader than deep, just visible from above; suture between the internasals a little shorter than that between the praefrontals; nasal undivided; frontal twice as long as broad, not much broader than the supraocular, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the panietals; loreal small, longer than deep; one praeocular; two postoculars ; temporals 1+1; seven upper labials, third and fourth entering the eye; four lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are longer than.the posterior and in contact with each other in front. Scales smooth, in 15 rows. Ventrals 162; anal divided; subcaudals 69. Greyish brown above, with dark brown spots, the largest of which form two alternating series on the anterior part of the back; a broad darker brown nuchal collar, narrowly interrupted in the middle; lower parts white [according to BOULENGER].

Distribution:
For a long time known only from Eritrea and Eastern Sudan, in 1999 found from Djibuti. In Ethiopia has not yet been found, it can be assumed to be present in the eastern part on the border with Djibuti, perhaps in the border areas with Eritrea in the northeast.

Behavior:
It occurs along the Red Sea, from coastal plains to semi-desert hills from 0 to 1800 m asl. Its found in stony and rocky savannah, sparsely covered with acacia trees. Diurnal. Diet probably similar to other species of the genus, mostly insects.

Description original:
Boulenger, GEORGE A.: Descriptions of new species of snakes in the collection of the British Museum. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (8) 14 (84): 482-485.

Common english name: African Dwarf Snake




Platyceps brevis (BOULENGER 1895)



Distribution:
Eastern and southern Ethiopia, the border region with Somalia (Jijiga, Dire Dawa,...??), probably the central Ogaden.

Poznámka:
B. SCHÄTTI and C. CHARVET Systematics of Platyceps brevis (Boulenger 1895)and related East African racers(Serpentes Colubrinae)

Description original:
Boulenger,G.A.: Rettili e Batraci. in, Esplorazione del Guiba e dei suoi Affluenti compeuta dal Cap. V. Bottego durante gli Anni 1892-93 sooto gli auspicii della Società Geografica Italiana. Annali Mus. civ. Stor. nat. Giacomo Doria (2) 15: 9-18

Common english name: Somali Racer



Platyceps smithi (BOULENGER 1895)

Platyceps brevis smithi — SCHÄTTI & CHARVET 2003

Description:
Snout obtuse, feebly projecting. Rostral once and a half as broad as deep, the portion visible from above measuring one fourth its distance from the frontal; internasals as long as the praefrontal; frontal broader than the supraocular, once and two fifths as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the parietals; loreal longer than deep; one praeocular, in contact with the frontal, with one or two suboculars below it; two post oculars; temporals 2 + 2; nine (exceptionally ten) upper labials, fifth and sixth (or sixth and seventh) entering the eye; four or five lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields; posterior chin-shields as long as or longer than the anterior and separated from each other by two series of scales. Scales smooth, in 21 rows. Ventrals very obtusely angulate laterally, 180-185; anal divided: subcaudals 100. Uniform pale buff above, pinkish on the sides; a greyish blotch below the eye and another across the temple; white beneath [According to BOULENGER].

Distribution:
In Ethiopia from the Omo River Delta (Turkana) to the east along the border with Kenya (Moyale, Mega, Dolo Odo),and around the Wabi Shebelle river towards the Ogaden.

Note:
B. SCHÄTTI and C. CHARVET Systematics of Platyceps brevis (Boulenger 1895)and related East African racers(Serpentes Colubrinae)

Description:
Boulenger, G.A.: An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Dr. A. Donaldson Smith in western Somaliland and the Galla Country. Proc. zool. Soc. Lond.: 530-540

Common english name: Smith's Racer



Platyceps somalicus (BOULENGER 1896)


Synonyma:
Zamenis somalicus BOULENGER 1896;
Coluber somalicus — SCHÄTTI & WILSON 1986;
Coluber somalicus - LARGEN & RASMUSSEN 1993; Haemorrhois somalicus.

Description:
Length of type 40 cm. Tail 10. Snout scarcely projecting, obtuse. Rostral broader than deep, the portion visible from above measuring one third its distance from the frontal; internasals a little shorter than the praefrontals; frontal bell-shaped, broader than the supraocular. once and two thirds as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the parietals; loreal longer than deep; one praeocular, not reaching the frontal, with a. subocular below it; two postoculars; temporals l + 2; eight upper labials, fourth and fifth entering the eye; four lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields; posterior chin-shields very narrow and widely separated from each other by scales. Scales smooth, in 15 rows. Ventrals 173; anal divided. Pale greyish brown above, with black cross-bars on the back and small spots on the sides; a blackish cross-bar between the eyes, a black blotch below the eye , another on the temple, and a black streak on the suture between the parietals; lower parts white [according to BOULENGER].

Distribution:
Only the type specimen is known. Ethiopia, Somali-Oromia region.

Note:
B. SCHÄTTI and C. CHARVET Systematics of Platyceps brevis (Boulenger 1895)and related East African racers(Serpentes Colubrinae)

Description original:
Boulenger,G.A.: A list of the reptiles and batrachians collected by the late Prince Eugenio Ruspoli in Somaliland and Gallaland in 1893. Annali Mus. civ. Stor. nat. Genova, Giacomo Doria, (2) 17: 5-14 [11]

Common english name: Ogaden Racer



Platyceps taylori (PARKER 1949)

Platyceps taylori Platyceps taylori Platyceps taylori Platyceps taylori

Synonyms:
Coluber taylori PARKER 1949: 40; Coluber taylori — LANZA 1983; Coluber taylori — LANZA 1988

Short description:
A small snake, maximum length to 700 mm. Midbody scale rows 21-23, ventrals in the males 179-186 , ventrals in the females 191-198, subcaudals males 81-96, subcaudals females 81-91. Distance from tip of snout to eye twice as long as the eye. Rostral shield relatively large and high, the ratio of width/height being 1.20, and the portion visible from above more than half its distance from the frontal; ratio rostral height/internasal suture 2.15; internasals short, the suture between the prefrontals being 2.15 times as long as that between the internasals; frontal 1.5 times as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout and only slightly shorter than the parietals; loreal once and a third as long as deep; preocular in contact with the frontal with a single subocular below it; two postoculars; temporals 2 + 3; nine upper labials, the fifth and sixth entering the eye; five lower labials i n contact with the anterior chin-shields which are a little shorter than the posterior; the latter are separated by two rows of scales. Scales smooth with paired apical pits in 21, 23, 15 longitudinal series. Ventrals 200; anal divided; subcaudals 90 + 1 . Brownish grey above. Head with darker markings as follows: traces of a dark bar across the snout, descending to the labials; a wavy edged bar across the interorbital region and on to the labials below the eye; a wavy edged transverse bar across the parietals, descending on to the temporal region, but not reaching the edge of the lip ; three spots in a row across the nape, the median one elongate; all these markings are darker at their edges. Body with eight rows of quincuncially arranged darker dots and spots. The outermost rows are black spots on the outer ends of the ventrals; the next two series are larger, along the flanks and the two dorsal series are still larger, but less distinct and are partially or wholly confluent to form oblique, oval or figure-of-eight shaped blotches or a broad zig-zag band. Where the blotches are discrete they are separated by narrow cream-coloured transverse bars of which there are about 63 between nape and vent. All markings become indistinct on the tail. Lower surfaces white with scattered black dots laterally [PARKER].

Distribution:
A species known only from Ethiopian and Somali arid zones in the east and central-eastern part. Westernmost findings are from Awash National Park, another on the border with Somalia and Djibouti. It is also known from Eritrea (Assab, Gahtelay).

Biology:
The behavior of this snake is not much known. Diurnal snake, feed various vertebrates, mostly lizard but also youngs of rodents. Oviparous.

Description original:
Parker,H.W.: The snakes of Somaliland and the Sokotra islands. Zool. Verh. Leiden 6: 1-115

Our records:
Metahara (Tomáš Mazuch); western slope of Mt.Fantale (Pavel Novák)

Common english name: Taylor’s Racer

Platyceps taylori - Habitat, the foot of Mt.Fantale, E Shewa, Ethiopia


Platyceps afarensis SCHÄTTI & INEICH, 2004

Short description:
A slender and fast moving snake, very similar to P.rhodorhachis. Maximum length 1035 mm, tail 295 mm. Midbody scale rows = 21, ventrals = 251 - 258 (in males), subcaudals = 143 - 144, anal scute divided and subcaudals paired. 19 teeth on maxilla, in the front 17 of the same size and after diastema 2 enlarged.

Distribution:
Found only in eastern Djibouti near village named Arta, in the dry scrubland habitat. At the same locality were also identified snakes Platyceps florulentus. Occurrence in neighboring countries (Somaliland, Ethiopia, Eritrea) is possible.

Biology:
Daily fast and actively hunting snake. The way of life is not known, but can be assumed that it will not differ from other similar species of the genus. They feed lizards, small rodents,..etc. Oviparous

Description original:
Schätti, B. & Ineich, I. 2004. A new racer of the genus Platyceps Blyth from Djibouti. Rev. Suisse de Zool. 111 (4): 685-690

Common english name: Djibouti Racer



Platyceps florulentus (GEOFFROY-ST-HILAIRE, 1827)

Platyceps florulentus
Platyceps florulentus Platyceps florulentus Platyceps florulentus Platyceps florulentus

Short description:
A moderately sized snake with a slender body and long snout. Maximum length up to 100 cm, averaging less. Eye big, pupil round. The tail long, about 25% of the total length. Scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 21-25, ventrals 192-228, subcaudals 83-105. Color brown, olive brown, silvery gray to reddish. The population of Egypt are in single color (gray-green), in Ethiopia the front part of the body gray, towards the tail brown to reddish brown. On the black lava fields can be almost black (see picture).
Specimen from Ethiopia, west side Lake Tana (FMNH): Midbody scale-rows 21; ventrals 198; anal divided; subcaudals 94; labials 9, fifth and sixth entering the orbit. Total length 286 (219+67) mm.

Distribution:
The flowered racer is found in northeast Africa, from Egypt south along the Nile Valley to Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya and Uganda, Isolated populations also occur in Nigeria and Cameroon. In Ethiopia from south Omo River Basin,through the Rift Valley to the north and northeast. From north of Lake Tana to Eritrea. He lives also on the Ethiopian highlands to the height 2400 m asl.,

Biology:
This species inhabits a number of habitats, including agricultural fields, semi-desert, dry savanna, wetlands, and sometimes rural gardens and old buildings. This is a very adaptable, euryvalent species. Mostly terrestrial snake, sometimes climbing on bushes and low trees. Oviparous. They hunt lizards, rodents, frogs...etc

Description original:
Geoffroy, l.: Reptiles. In: Savigny, M. J. C. L. de, Description d’Égypte... Vol. l. Histoire Naturelle. Paris, pp. 121-160 (115-184) [1809?]

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin); Metahara near lake Besseka (Trailin)

Common english name: Flowered Racer

Platyceps florulentus - Habitat, Metahara, rainy season, E Shewa, Ethiopia



Platyceps largeni (SCHÄTTI, 2001)


Short escription:
Colubrid snake which is known only from a few specimens. Rather a small species, total lenght of about 600 mm. Midbody scale rows 21, ventrals 182 - 193 in males and 193 - 197 in females. 87 - 90 pairs of subcaudals. In the largest preserved specimen is dorsum pale grey, edges of scales black, and creating on dorsum a dark reticulation. The smallest specimens are brown, or gray-brown, with two dark transverse bands on the head, and on front of body a few transverse bands. The under side cream or white, with dark spots in longitudinal rows.

Distribution:
Dahlac archipelago in the Red Sea coast of Eritrea. It is possible that he lives on the adjacent mainland.

Biology:
It inhabits arid islands with spore vegetation, with a very warm climate. The annual average temperature on the islands reaches around 32° C. It is one of the hottest areas on the earth. Activates in the morning and in early evening, hunting particularly lizards or geckos (Trachylepis, Philochortus, Tarentola..), probably rodents or chicks of seabirds. The behavior of the species unknow. Oviparous.

Description original:
SCHÄTTI, B. 2001. A new species of Coluber (sensu lato) from the Dahlak Islands, Eritrea, with a reviw of the herpetofauna of the archipelago. Russ. J. Herpetol. 8 (2): 139-148

Common english name: Dahlak Racer



Platyceps rhodorachis (JAN 1865)

Short description:
A medium sized snake, the largest spesies from the genus Platyceps. Maximal length almost 130 cm. The dorsal scales in 19 rows at midbody, ventral scales 208 - 228, and 112 to 132 pairs of subcaudals. The dorsum is pale grey or brown, with dark transverse bars on the first third of body. The rear part of the body is gray and dotted. Tail long, the belly white.
Specimen from Somaliland, South of Toyo Plain (FMNH): Midbody scale-rows 19; ventrals 212; anal divided; subcaudals 131; labials 9, fifth and sixth entering the orbit. Total length 425 (300+125) mm.

Distribution:
Central Asia and the Middle East, northern India, Africa, Egypt and Libya. In Eastern Africa, Eritrea, Djibouti, Ethiopia and northern Somalia (Somaliland).

Biology:
It inhabit semi-desert or nearly desert rocky or sandy areas with small shrubs. Oviparous.

Note:
The population in Eritrea, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Somalia belongs to the subspecies Coluber rhodorachis subniger (Boettger, 1893).

Description original:
Jan, G. in: De Filippi, Note di un Viaggio in Persia nel 1862. G. Daelli & C. Editori, Milan, xi + 396 pp.

Common english name: Jan’s Cliff Racer



Dasypeltis abyssina (DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854)

Short description:
Similar to Dasypeltis sahelensis. The dorsum grey-brown, with transverse dark spots on its back, on the flanks vertical narrow strips. Maximal length to 70 cm. Dorsal scales rough and keeled. Midbody scale rows 21, ventrals 273. Long time considered as a synonym for Dasypeltis scabra, revalidation in paper
Le genre Dasypeltis Wagler (Serpentes : Colubridae) en Afrique de l’Ouest : description de trois espèces et d’une sous-espèce nouvelles par Jean-François TRAPE et Youssouph MANÉ 2006.

Distribution:
Ethiopia and Eritrea The actual range of the distribution is not known.

Biology:
Poorly known species. But will be similar to other species of the genus. The diet birds' eggs.

Description original:
Duméril, A.M.C., G. BIBRON & A.H.A. DUMÉRIL: Erpétologie générale ou Histoire Naturelle complète des Reptiles. Vol. 7 (partie 1). Paris, xvi + 780 S.

Common english name: Ethiopian egg eater



Dasypeltis atra STERNFELD 1912

Dasypeltis atra
Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra
Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra Dasypeltis atra

Short description:
Rather small snake, total length 100 cm, but mostly about 60 cm. The head oval, snout short and rounded. The eye big, pupil vertical, black and iris goldish, black reticulated. The tail 12 to 18% of the total length. The dorsal scales keeled. Midbody scale rows 22-27, ventrals 202-237, subcaudals paired 49-72. The coloration variable. Mostly uniform black , less frequently brown, sometimes red-brick with pattern.

Distribution:
From eastern Congo, to Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, southeastern Sudan and Ethiopia. In Ethiopia, humid montane forests of the Ethiopian highlands on both sides of the Rift Valley (Bonga, Bedelle, Metu, Asebe Teferi, Sheik Hussein, Negelle?).

Biology:
They asociated with forests or savannah at altitudes of about 1600 m asl. Semi-arboreal snake which searches for eggs on the ground, trees and bushes. Nocturnal. Anatomical adaptation of the jaw, teeth and anterior cervical vertebrae allow them to devour relatively large eggs. Empty shells throw up. The females lays 6-10 highly elongated eggs 35x15 mm, the incubation period about 2 months. The juveniles are small and feed small eggs of smallest birds, probably also reptiles. They are often found under stones, truncks etc. In adults predominate arboreal lifestyle.

Description original:
Sternfeld, R.: IV. Zoologie II. Lfg. Reptilia. In: Schubotz., R. (ed.): Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse der Deutschen Zentral-Afrika Expedition 1907- 1908, unter Führung A. Friedrichs, Herzogs zu Mecklenburg. Klinkhard und Biermann, Leipzig: 197-279.

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin, Necas, Lizler); Mersu (Pavel Novák); near Neghelle Borana (Vladimir Trailin, Pavel Novak)

Common english name: Montane Egg-eater

Dasypeltis atra - Habitat, Jimma, Kaffa keflehager, Ethiopia



Dasypeltis scabra (LINNAEUS 1758)

Dasypeltis scabra
Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra
Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra Dasypeltis scabra

Short description:
The most famous egg-eater. Reaches a length of up to 100 cm, mostly to 80 cm. The eye big, pupila vertical. The tail 12 to 18% of the total length. Dorsal scales strongly keeled. Midbody scale rows 20-28, ventrals in the males 195-247, ventrals in the females 207-273, subcaudals paired, in the males 55-68, in the females 47-59. The color variable, mostly grey-brown or light brown with dark brown pattern (see pictures). Sometimes they can be a uniform brown.
Specimens from FMNH: Midbody scale-rows 23-25; ventrals 212-234; anal entire; subcaudals 51-67; labials 6-7, third and fourth entering the orbit, or 8, third, fourth, and fifth in No. 12841 and on right side of No. 9913. Largest specimen measures 728 (628+100) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
The whole territory of Ethiopia in suitable semi-arid areas, from south to north to Eritrea (in some places replace him D.abyssina).

Biology:
Nocturnal snake, which climbing on trees and bushes, where he looks for bird nests, mostly of weavers. The females lays up to 25 eggs in size 15x35 mm. All Egg-eaters can be without problems for a long time starve, which is probably an adaptation to seasonal occurrence of bird eggs. When threatened it opens its jaws revealing black color inside its mouth, while flicking the tongue and rubbing the scales against each other, similar to vipers of the genus Echis.

Description original:
Linnaeus, C.: Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii, Holmiæ. 10th Edition: 824 pp.

Our records:
Filtu (Pavel Novák); between Filtu and Neghelle Borana (Vladimir Trailin)

Common english name: Rhombic Egg Eater

Dasypeltis scabra - Habitat, near Filtu, Sidama keflehager, Ethiopia



Dispholidus typus (SMITH 1828)


Short description:
The average adult boomslang is 100–160 cm in total length, but some exceed 183 cm. The eyes are exceptionally large, and the head has a characteristic egg-like shape. Coloration is very variable. Males are light green with black or blue scale edges, but adult females may be brown. The young are colored differently, usually green, yellow green, black "speckled" ....etc. Tail is long, about 25-30% of the total length. The head is distinct from the neck and the canthus rostralis is distinct. Very large eyes with pear shaped pupil. The maxillary teeth are small anteriorly, seven or eight in number, followed by three very large, grooved fangs situated below each eye. The mandibular teeth are subequal. Midbody scale rows 17-21(19) with apical pits, ventrals 164-201, double keeled, the anal scute divided, subcaudals 94-142.

Distribution:
Sub-saharan Africa. In Ethiopia at whole territory at lower altitudes, not on highlands (Gambella, Arba Minch, Mui, Awash NP, Moyale, Mega, Sheik Hussein, and in Ogaden). Northwards to Eritrea.

Biology:
Dispholidus typus are solitary reptiles that rarely communicate with, and will even prey upon, other members of their species. They spend most of their day hunting in trees and shrubs, carefully gliding through tree branches until an ideal hiding place is found. Boomslangs strike without warning and are able to capture most of their prey without being seen. These diurnal, arboreal snakes spend most of the day camouflaged in tree branches waiting for prey and spend most of their time curled up in warm bird nests during the colder months while often hibernating for periods of time. Since D.typus live in warmer climates and hibernate during cooler weather, there is no need for migration. When threatened it inflates the neck and flicking the tongue. They attack very quickly out of the loop. The females lays 10-25 eggs in size 40x25 mm. Incubation period 3-4 month.

Note:
Highly venomous. Dispholidus typus is considered one of the most venomous of rear-fanged snakes.
In Ethiopia occur ssp. Dispholidus typus typus (SMITH 1829).

Description original:
Smith,A.: Contributions to the natural history of South Africa. Zool. Journ. 4: 433-444

Our records:
Debre Zeit, Hora lake (Trailin); Luqua (Trailin);

Common english name: Boomslang

Dispholidus typus - Habitat, near Turmi, Omo, Gamo Gofa keflehager, Ethiopia (Observation)


Duberria lutrix (LINNAEUS, 1758)

Short description:
A small snake, reaches to lenght up to 450 mm. The head short, snout rounded, eye big with round pupil. Tail short, 14-22% of the length; body scales smooth; midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 107-149 (Ethiopia 107-129), subcaudals paired, in number 17-39 (20-34); dorsum brown or deep brown, on the back lighter or redish longitunal band which is sometimes divided by thin vertebral stripe; undersite brown, deep-brown or black. Some individuals may be melanistic.
Rostral once and a third to nearly twice as broad as deep, visible from above, nasal entire, internasals broader than long, about as long as the prefrontals; frontal once and a half to twice as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, as long as, or slightly longer or slightly shorter than, the parietals, once and a half to twice as broad as a supraocular; loreal small, rarely transversely divided or absent; preocular 1, very rarely 2; eye moderate, its diameter greater than its distance from the mouth; postoculars 2, lower sometimes minute, or 1 only; temporals 1 + 2, rarely l + l or 1 + 2; upper labials 6, the third and fourth entering the orbit; 3, rarer 4, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are subequal with, or longer than, the posterior. Midbody scales in 15 rows, smooth; ventrals 120—144; anal entire, very rarely divided; subcaudals 24—51, pairs (21 - 46 fide Boulenger).
Color. Above, brick red, reddish brown, pale brown, olive or yellowish, with or without a vertebral series of fine dark dashes; flanks gray or plumbeous, usually sharply distinct from dorsal coloring. Below, white, cream or yellowish, the outer edges of the ventrals gray, usually flecked or spotted with black. The subcaudals of females range from 25-32, in males from 33—49 [According to LOVERIDGE].
Duberria lutrix abyssinica: Rostral broader than deep, visible from above; suture between the internasals hardly half as long as that between the praefrontals; frontal scarcely longer than broad, as long as its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the parietals, a little broader than the supraocular ; nostril in the anterior half of the nasal; no loreal, nasal forming a suture with the praeocular; one prae and one postocular ; temporals 1+2; six upper labials, third and fourth entering the eye; two pairs of chin-shields in contact with each other, the anterior in contact with three labials. Scales in 15 rows. Ventrals 120; anal entire; subcaudals 32. Olive-brown above, with a fine, interrupted, black vertebral line ; sides black, dotted with whitish; belly greyish olive, spotted and freckled with black on the sides. Total length 235 mm.; tail 43 mm. Abyssinia [BOULENGER].

Distribution:
In Africa from eastern South Africa, north into Ethiopia. To west eastern Zaire and southern Zimbabwe. The central Ethiopia at higher altitudes from 1800 to 3100 m asl.

Biology:
Terrestrial small snake. As the name implies, the Duberia lutrix is a specialised predator and feeds on snails and slugs. The females usually gives birth to litters of three to twelve, big females, 20 youngs. When alarmed, the snake secretes a noxious substance from glands near the base of the tail and rolls up into a defensive spiral with the head in the middle. Ovoviviparous, molluscivorous.

Note:
In Ethiopia ssp. Duberria lutrix abyssinica (BOULENGER 1894)

Description original:
Linnaeus, C.: Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii, Holmiæ. 10th Edition: 824 pp.

Common english name: Common Slug Eater



Grayia tholloni MOCQUARD, 1897

Short description:
Maximal length up to 120 cm, on average less, about 80 cm. The eyes big, pupil round, iris yellow. Tail long, up to 40% of the total length. The scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 133-147, subcaudals 110-129 (Ethiopia ventrals 141-150, subcaudals 119-121). The dorsum gray, gray-green, the labials are yellow and strongly edged with black. The belly is yellowish, sometimes with dark spots on ventral shield.
Specimen from FMNH ("Belgian Congo"): Midbody scale-rows 15; ventrals 137; anal divided; subcaudals?; labials 8, fourth entering the orbit. Head and body measure 402 mm.; tail mutilated [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
S Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, N/E/S Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Congo, Angola, Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Gambia, Senegal. In Ethiopia, is representative of the Central and West African herpetofauna. It occur at Rift Valley (Arba Minch), and on west around (Gambella).

Biology:
Behavior of the snake is closely linked to the the aquatic environment. Active mainly by day. Sheltering on the banks of slow flowing rivers or lakes in vegetation, when search for prey as frogs and fish. Perfectly swims. The females lays 10 - 20 eggs in size 50 x 25 mm. The way of life of the species is similar to the European snakes of genus Natrix.

Description original:
Mocquard, M.F.: Sur une collection de Reptiles recueillis par M. Haug, à Lambaréné. Bull. Soc. Philom. Paris, (8) 9: 5-20

Common english name: Tholloni's African Water Snake



Hemirhagerrhis hildebrandtii (PETERS 1878)

Short description:
Head broad posteriorly, snout blunt; msml broader than deep, just visible from above; internasals very much shorter than prefrontals; frontal narrowed mesially. more than one and a half times as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout. Subequal to a parietal, loreal longer than deep, sometimes not contacting the elongate semidivided nasal, which has the nostril pierced dorsolaterally; preocular in contact with or separated from frontal; postoculars 2 (very rarely 3); temporals usually 2+3; supralabials 8 (very rarely 9). the fourth and fifth (very rarely fifth and sixth) contacting the orbit. Infralabials 10. rarely 9, ll or 12, the first 4 or 5 in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter to longer than the posterior. Dorsal scale rows smooth with single apical pits, in 17-17-13 rows. Reducing by loss of lateral (very rarely paravertebral) rows, ventrals 157-177; anal divided; subcaudals 79-105 [Broadley-Hughes].

Distribution:
In east Africa: Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya and Tanzania. Central and southern Ethiopia east of the Rift Valley.

Biology:
Semi-desert and arid savanna, at altitudes up to 1200 m asl. Nocturnal. They climbing at night on trees and bushes, sometimes on ground and when search for their main prey - geckos, but also another lizards.

Description original:
Peters,W.C.H.: Über die von Hrn. J. M. Hildebrandt während seiner letzten ostafrikanischen Reise gesammelten Säugethiere und Amphibien. Mber. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1878: 194-209

Common english name: Kenyan Bark Snake



Hemirhagerrhis kelleri BOETTGER 1893

Short description:
Head broad posteriorly, snout blunt; rostral twice as broad as deep, just visible from above; internasals much shorter than prefrontals; frontal narrowed mesially, about twice as long as broad, much longer than its distance from the end of the snout, subequal to a parietal; loreal longer than deep; nostril pierced dorsolaterally in a large elongate semidivided nasal; preocuiar separated from frontal or just making point contact; postoculars 2, very rarely 1 or 3; temporals usually 2+3; supralabials 8 (very rarely 7), the fourth and fifth (very rarely third and fourth), entering the orbit; infralabials 10, rarely 9 or 11, the first four or five in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter to subequal in length to the posterior. Dorsal scale rows smooth with single apical pits in 17-17-13 rows, reducing by loss of lateral (usually anterior reduction) and paravertebral (posterior reduction) rows; ventrals 140-158; anal divided; subcaudals 61-78 [according to BROADLEY, HUGHES].
Schnauze kurz und stumpf; Rostrale normal gebildet, etwas schief nach unten gerichtet, halbmondförmig, fast um das Doppelte breiter als hoch, von oben eben noch sichtbar; Nasale groß, Seiner ganzen Länge nach etwas kissenförmig gewölbt. In der Sutur längs des Oberrandes der vorderen Supralabialen ist die Zügelgegend etwas vertieft. Die sehr kleinen Internasalen vorn gemeinsam gerade abgeschnitten, hinten einen einspringenden stumpfen Winkel darstellend, in den die Praefrontalen in ausspringendem Winkel eingreiden. Der Außenrand der Internasalen ist länger als die Breite eines Einzelschildes, der Innenrand halb so lang wie die Praefrontalsutur. Supraocularen etwas brauenartig vorspringend. Frontale doppelt so lang wie vorn breit, etwas länger als der Abstand von Schnauzenspitze zu seinem Vorderrande, so lang wie die Parietalen. Frenale unregelmäßig dreieckig, fast so hoch wie lang; Praeoculare in Berührung mit dem Frontale, sein unterer schmälerer Theil vom oberen breiteren Theile mitunter halb oder ganz abgespalten; zwei Postocularen, das Obere wenig größer als das untere; Temporalen 2 + 4, seltener 2 + 3. Supralabialen acht, das vierte und fünfte unter dem Auge. Vier oder fünf Infralabialen in Contact mit den vorderen Kinnschildern, die kaum kürzer sind als die hinteren [BOETTGER].

Distribution:
They occur from Somalia, through southeastern Ethiopia to Kenya and northern Tanzania. Southeastern Ethiopia (Borana, Ogaden) at altitudes from 200 to 700 m asl.

Biology:
Poorly known species. Nocturnal and semi-arboreal snake. They feed small lizards, mainly geckos, and looking also for their eggs. Oviparous.

Description:
Boettger,O.: Übersicht der von Prof. C. Keller anlässlich der Ruspoli'schen Expedition nach den Somaliländern gesammelten Reptilien und Batrachier. Zool. Anz. 16 (416): 113-119

Common english name: Keller's Bark Snake



Lamprophis abyssinicus MOCQUARD 1906

Short description:
A medium sized, little known species. They reaches length up to 100 cm. The color brown with two broad bands extending from the snout along the head and body. On dorsum darker vertebral stripe. The belly cream.
Midbody scale rows 21-23, ventrals 169-185, subcaudals 36-51.

Distribution:
Endemic species of Ethiopian highlands, west of the Rift Valley. Known localities are Ambo, Wush-Wush, Akaki and Mizan Teferi.

Biology:
Way of life unknow. It feeds, like the other members of the genus, different vertebrates as rodents, frogs and lizards (the youngs mostly frogs). Oviparous. It inhabits cooler regions of the montane forests at altitudes of about 2000 m asl.

Description original:
Mocquard : Description de quelques reptiles et d’un batracien d’espèces nouvelles. Bull. Mus. natn. Hist. nat. Paris 12: 247-253

Common english name: Abyssinian House Snake



Lamprophis erlangeri (STERNFELD 1908)

Lamprophis erlangeri
Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri
Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri Lamprophis erlangeri

Short description:
Rather larger snake. The largest female, which I found, was long over 120 cm. On average is smaller, about 100 cm. 21-23 midbody scale rows, 217 - 240 ventrals, and there are 38 - 64 paired subcaudals. The dorsum deep brown or black, rostrum yellow. Eyes dark, black. On dorsum broad, golden-brown, olive-green or khaki vertebral band. Sometimes it may not be visible and the whole animal is black. The stripe is more visible after molting. The undersite is dark grey or black.

Distribution:
Endemic species of Ethiopian highlands. Occurs on Ethiopian highlands on both sides of the Rift Valley, from 1800 to 2500 m asl.(Bonga, Bedelle, Metu, Kibre Mengist)

Biology:
They inhabit montane forests in south part of the Ethiopian highlands. Mostly terrestrial snake with nocturnal activity. They hunt small vertebrates, such as rodents, frogs or lizards. Oviparous. In captivity eats willingly laboratory mices.

Description original:
Sternfeld,R.: Neue und ungenügend bekannte afrikanische Schlangen. S.Ber. Ges. naturforsch. Freunde Berlin, 4: 92-95

Our records:
Bedelle (Lizler, Trailin, Neèas); 50 km southeast of Bonga (Tomáš Novák)

Common english name: Ethiopian House Snake

Lamprophis erlangeri - Habitat, 50 km southeast of Bonga, Kaffa keflehager, Ethiopia


Boaedon maculatus PARKER, 1932

Boaedon maculatus
Boaedon maculatus Boaedon maculatus Boaedon maculatus Boaedon maculatus

Short description:
Rostral once and a half as broad as deep ; internasals as long as broad, two-thirds the length of the prefrontals, forming a short suture with the rostral; frontal once and a half as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout and slightly shorter than the parietals, a row of four scales separating the posterior half of the nasal, the loreal and lower preocular from the upper labials ; loreal irregularly pentagonal, once and two-thirds as long as deep; 2 preoculars, the upper larger and in contact with the frontal; 3 postoculars ; temporals 2+3; 10 upper labials; the fifth and sixth entering the eye; 4 lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are longer than the posterior. Scales smooth, with paired apical pits, in 29 rows at the mid-body; 25 on the neck ; 19 before the vent. Ventrals 227; anal entire; subcaudals 54 pairs + 1. A double series of circular dark-brown spots on the back, alternating, but partially fused on the middle line; the members of each series separated from one another by narrow pinkish-white interspaces; similar, but smaller, lateral spots alternate with the dorsals, being separated from them and from each other by the ground-colour. Head dark brown; a light stripe along the temple, edge of the supraocular, and forwards to the prefrontals, where it meets and fuses with its fellow before continuing to the tip of the snout; a dark streak from the nostril through the eye to the angle of the mouth; upper lip white, with a vertical dark bar beneath the nostril (continued on the lower lip) and an oblique dark streak from beneath the centre of the eye. Lower surface uniform pinkish-white [PARKER].
Very little known species. Maximum length of about 800 mm. The head long, snout narow, rostral 1.5 times wider than long, internasale longer than wide, Frontale 1.5-2 times longer than wide, loreale pentagonal, 2-3 times longer than wide, not in contact with supralabials, from them separated by several smaller scales. 2 - 3 preoculare, the upper larger and in contact with frontale. 3 postoculare, temporale 2+3. 10 - 11 supralabials, usually the fourth, fifth and sixth in contact with the eye (in the type specimens 5 and 6). Sublabials 10 - 11. The dorsal scales smooth, with two apical pits. 29 midbody scale rows. Ventralia 227, anal scute divided, number of paired subcaudals 54+1. The coloring of live specimens is unknown. Dark stripe from the nostril through the eye at the end of the mouth. In anterior of the body double line of dark oval spots, that extend to the middle of the body. Other small spots are on the sides.

Distribution:
Its occurs in Djibouti, Somaliland and Somalia even on ethio-somali border. Its occurrence in Ethiopia is very probable.

Biology:
Poorly known species. It inhabits semi-arid areas at lower altitudes. The behavior, however, will not differ from other species of the genus. Oviparous.

Description:
Parker,H.W. 1932. Two collections af amphibians and reptiles from British Somaliland. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1932: 335-367

Common english name: Somali house Snake



Boaedon fuliginosus (BOIE, 1827)

Boaedon fuliginosus
Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus
Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus Boaedon fuliginosus

Short decsription:
Eye rather small. Rostral broader than deep, just visible from above; internasals shorter than the prcefrontals; frontal once and a half to once and two thirds as long as broad, as long as its dis-tance from the end of the snout, as long as the parietals i loreal at least twice as long as deep; one or two praeoculars, in contact with the frontal; two postoculars; temporals 1+2, rarely 2+2; eight or nine upper labials, two or three of which enter the eye; three or four lower labials in contact with the anterior chinshields, which are as long as or a little longer than the posterior. Scales in 27 to 31 rows. Ventrals 205-237; anal entire; subcaudals 47-67. Uniform blackish brown above, whitish inferiorly.
Well known snake, which reaches a size about 100 cm. The dorsum brown, deep brown, yellow-brown, sometimes black (particularly in juveniles). Through the eye and on the upper jaw can be present 1-2 stripes, which exceed on the neck. Tail 15-18% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 25-33, ventrals 187-249, subcaudals 42-74 (in Ethiopia)

Distribution:
Species with wide distribution area. Subsaharan Africa, mostly east and northeast, even south arabian peninsula (Yemen). In Ethiopia occurs whole country at altitudes 400 - 2400 m asl, mainly in semi-arid areas (savannas, semi-deserts) but also at forests regions, from the south to the north to Eritrea. In moist montane forest is found only rarely.

Biology:
Noctural. Predominantly terrestrial snake, which eat a variety of vertebrates. In the daytime is hiding under rocks, under trunks, in burrows and in termite mound. The females lays 4 - 20 eggs in size 30 x 20 mm. Incubation period 2 - 3 month.

Description original:
Boie, F.: Bemerkungen über Merrem's Versuch eines Systems der Amphibien, 1. Lieferung: Ophidier. Isis van Oken, Jena, 20: 508-566.

Our records:
Langano (Vladimir Trailin); Yabello (Vladimir Trailin); Filtu (Pavel Novak)

Common english name: Brown house Snake

Boaedon fuliginosus - Habitat, Filtu, Sidama keflehager, Ethiopia



Pseudoboodon boehmei RASMUSSEN & LARGEN 1992

Pseudoboodon boehmei
Pseudoboodon boehmei Pseudoboodon boehmei Pseudoboodon boehmei Pseudoboodon boehmei

Short description:
A medium sized snakes which reaches up to 100 cm. The dorsum golden-yellow, yellow-brown, with longitudinal light brown band on flanks (see pictures), the belly white or cream. The head broad between eyes, towards the rostrum significantly narrowed, distinctly separate from the body by narrower neck. Between 5 and 6 supralabial deep pit typical for the entire genus Pseudoboodon. The function of this structure remains unknow. Midbody scale rows 21, ventrals in males 189-193, ventrals in females 189-195, subcaudals in males 57-67, subcaudals in females 45. Morphologically significant snake not interchangeable with other species in this area. My bred females:
Female No.1 - Midbody scale rows 21, Ventrals 193, Subcaudals 44
Female No.2 - Midbody scale rows 21, Ventrals 185, Subcaudals 44
Female No.3 - Midbody scale rows 21, Ventrals 184, Subcaudals 44

Distribution:
Endemic species for Ethiopian highlands in the southwest area of montane tropical forests (Jimma, Bedelle, Godare, Metu).

Biology:
Montane afro-tropical forest in south-west Ethiopia. Relativelly abundant in vicinity of villages. It´s tolerant to low temperatures, on the contrary, it does not tolerate high temperatures above 30°C. They feed rodents, frogs, lizards and perhaps birds. Oviparous. The youngs are light brown, light beige or pinkish, very small and feed small frogs and tadpoles. Youngs can be found often at night on the banks of slow flowing rivers or lakes in vegetation. Nocturnal.

Description original:
Rasmussen,J.B. & LARGEN,M.J.: A review of Pseudoboodon PERACCA with the description of a new species from Southwest Ethiopia (Serpentes, Dipsadidae, Lycodontinae, Boadontini). Steenstrupia 18 (3): 65-80 (76)

Our records:
Bedelle (Lizler, Trailin, Neèas)

Common english name: Böhme’s Ethiopian Snake

Pseudoboodon boehmei - Habitat, Bedelle, Illubabor keflehager, Ethiopia


Pseudoboodon gascae PERACCA 1897


Short description:
A medium sized snake, Maximal length about 700 mm, maybe more. The body more robust than previous species. The dorsum is brown, with series of large oval, dark brown blotches, that may be completly or partially fused to zigzag vertebral stripe. On the sides brighter spots in a longitudinal row. Deep pit visible. Midbody scale rows 19-21, ventrals in males 192-214, ventrals in females 193-197, subcaudals in males 56-59, subcaudals in females 40-41.

Distribution:
Endemic of Ethiopian highlands. Known from the south around Yabello, north to Eritrea. He lives at altitudes between 1500 - 3000 m asl.

Biology:
Like P.lemniscatus.

Description:
Peracca, M.G.: Intorno ad alcuni Ofidii raccolti a Maldi (Eritrea) dal Capitano A. Gasca. Bollettino dei Musei di Zoologia e di Anatomia Comparata della R. Università di Torino 12 (273): 1-3

Common english name: Gasca’s Ethiopian Snake



Pseudoboodon lemniscatus (DUMÉRIL,BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854)

Pseudoboodon lemniscatus
Pseudoboodon lemniscatus Pseudoboodon lemniscatus Pseudoboodon lemniscatus Pseudoboodon lemniscatus

Short description:
Eye small. Rostral broader than deep, scarcely visible from above; internasals subtriangular, shorter than the prmfrontals; frontal twice as long as broad, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, as long as the parietals; loreal longer than deep; one praeocular, not extending to the upper surface of the head; two (or three) postoculars; temporals 1+ 2; eight upper labials, third, fourth, and fifth entering the eye; three or four lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are much longer than the posterior. Scales in 21 or 23 rows. Ventrals 194-200; anal entire; subcaudals 41—6O. Pale brown above; a dark vertebral band, extending to the end of the snout and forming a loop on the crown; a dark lateral band, three or four scales wide on the body, also extending to the end of the snout, passing through the eye; lower parts yellowish, with brown dots, which may form a streak along each side of the belly, and one along the middle of the tail [according to BOULENGER].
A medium-sized snake, by body shape and color similar to Pseudoboodon gascae. The head toward to the rostrum narrowed, but not so distinctly as in P.boehmei. The dorsum dark brown with two dorsolateral golden-yellow longitudinal bands. Ventral broad dark brown stripe. At the top of the head a narrow yellow longitudinal strip. Sometimes golden-yellow with three brown longitudinal bands. One on vertebral side and two are dorsoventral. Belly white or yellowish with two brown stripe. Between 5-6 supralabials deep pit, but not so large as in P.boehmei. Midbody scale rows 19-25, ventrals in males 182-205, ventrals in females 189-208, subcaudals in males 47-64, subcaudals in females 32-46.
Specimen from Chilalo Mountains, Ethiopia (FMNH): Midbody scale-rows 23; ventrals 206; anal entire; subcaudals 43; labials 8, third, fourth, and fifth entering the orbit; preocular 1; postoculars 2; temporals 1+2. Total length 805 (707+98) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Endemic for Ethiopian highlands. From the southwest, north to Eritrea, including parts of the highlands east of the Rift Valley.

Biology:
Nocturnal terrestrial snake. Is active even at low temperatures between 10 -15 C. It inhabit montane afrotropical forests, but also deforested mountain meadows and rural areas including villages. Abundant species in Ethiopia. They feed rodents, frogs, lizards. The females lays about 10 to 15 eggs. Incubation period is 60-70 days. The youngs are small, about 160 mm long and colored as adults. They feed only very small frogs or tadpoles.

Description original:
Duméril, A.M.C., G. BIBRON & A.H.A. DUMÉRIL: Erpétologie générale ou Histoire Naturelle complète des Reptiles. Vol. 7 (partie 1). Paris, XVI + 780 S.

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin, Neèas, Lizler); Hirna (Tomáš Mazuch)

Common english name: Striped Ethiopian Snake

Pseudoboodon lemniscatus - Habitat, Addis Abeba, Ayat, Shewa keflehager, Ethiopia


Pseudoboodon sandfordorum SPAWLS 2004

Short description:
Most recently described species of the genus. A medium sized, maximal length 100 cm (908 mm the largest paratype). Head big, significantly separated by the neck. Two anterior temporal shields. The color similar to species P.gascae, the patches on the back, which number is around 40, but they not tend to fuse into "Vipers" patterns. They are high number of ventrals 216-223, temporals 2+3, midbody scale rows 21, subcaudals 57 (holotype). Eight supralabials.

Distribution:
The Ethiopian highlands, endemic. At altitudes 1800 - 2500 m asl. Known findings come from an area 150 km northwest of Addis Ababa.

Biology:
Poorly known species. It inhabits grassy and wooded areas. Nocturnal. They feed a variety of vertebrates such as lizards (Trachylepis), frogs (Ptychadena...), and rodents.

Description:
Spawls, Stephen. A New Species of Pseudoboodon (Reptilia: Serpentes) from the Central Highlands of Ethiopia; with notes on some other members of the genus. Afr. J. Herpetol 53 (1): 13-19

Common english name: Sandford’s Ethiopian snake



Lycophidion capense (SMITH 1831)

Short description:
Ventrals 180 - 188 ♂♂ ; 188 - 190 ♀♀ ; subcaudals 36 - 41 ♂♂ ; 30 - 39 ♀♀. Brownish above each individual scale showing a single large subapical white spot (which can be irregular in shape) or several smaller dots or a white apical border; head plates with light vermiculations; belly and throat entirely light colored.
A small snake, maximal length to 60 cm, on average about 40 cm. The head flattened, narrowed, significantly differentiated from the body by nerrow neck. The eyes small, pupil vertical. The tail 8-15% of the total length. Dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 164 - 221, subcaudals 26 - 42 and paired. The color dark grey or brown, dorsal scales bright at the edges. In relation to the size of the head have very long teeth.
FMNH specimens: Midbody scale-rows 17; ventrals 176-203; anal entire; subcaudals 32-43; labials 8, third, fourth, and fifth entering the orbit except on No. 4026 where the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth enter on the right side, the fourth, fifth, and sixth on the left. Largest specimen measures 399 (360+39) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
The whole territory of Ethiopia, with the exception of the central Ogaden and except very arid areas. To the north to Eritrea. Namibia, Botswana, E Republic of South Africa (Transvaal, Natal, Cape, Swaziland), Angola, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, W Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Sudan, S Egypt, Zambia, Sudan, N/E/S Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Malawi, Central African Republic, Cameroon

Biology:
It inhabits a variety of habitats, from the savanna to montane forests, does not occur in arid areas. A slow night snake. It lives under stones, in short vegetation and they hunt small lizards. The females lays 3 - 10 eggs in size 10 x 20 mm.

Note:
In Ethiopia Lycophidion capense jacksoni BOULENGER 1893.

Description original:
Smith, A.: Contributions to the natural history of South Africa, No. 1. South African Quart. J. (1) 2 (5) 5: 9-24.

Common english name: Cape Wolf Snake



Lycophidion depressirostre LAURENT 1968

Short description:
Only one apical pit. Snout shorter than the parietals; postnasal in contact with both 1 and 2 labials; scale rows 17-17-15; ventrals 155 - 174 ♂♂ , 161 - 178 ♀♀ ; subcaudals 32 - 39 ♂♂ , 22 - 31 ♀♀ . Brownish, each individual scale with a light subapical spot generally divided in minute dots. No markings on the top plates of the head, but a broad, conspicuous light band with sinuous border around the snout. Belly and throat pigmented.
A small snake, maximum length 50 cm, on average 35 cm. The eyes small, pupil vertical; tail 8-14% of the total length; dorsal scales smooth; midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 153 - 180, subcaudals 26 - 40 and paired. Color dark grey; head grey, dorsal scales dotted; belly dark grey, sometimes lighter under the throat.

Distribution:
Southern and Eastern of Ethiopia (Omo, Awash, Harar, Moyale) and Ogaden.
S Sudan, Central African Republic, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, S Ethiopia.

Biology:
It Inhabits semi-arid areas, savannas. Nocturnal, terrestrial snake. Oviparous.

Description original:
Laurent,R.F.: A re-examination of the snake genus Lycophidion Duméril & Bibron. Bull. Mus. comp. Zool. Harvard 136 (12): 461-482

Common english name: Flat-snouted Wolf Snake



Lycophidion taylori BROADLEY & HUGHES 1993

Short description:
A small snake, maximum length 50 cm, in average up to 40 cm. The head flattened, tongue pink, pupil vertical, iris grey. Tail 9-13% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth, subcaudals paired. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 161 - 184, subcaudals 26 - 36. The color grey, grey-brown, dorsal scales light dotted, as well as the head. On the throat a lighter transverse bar.

Distribution:
Central and Eastern Ethiopia (Awash, Dire Dawa, Jijiga).
S Somalia, Chad, Central African Republic, Senegal, Ethiopia, Tanzania

Biologie:
Poorly known species. Acacia-Commiphora savanna. Nocturnal. Oviparous. The diet is unknow, probably lizards.

Description:
Broadley, D.G. & Hughes,B.: A review of the genus Lycophidion (Serpentes: Colubridae) in northeastern Africa. Herpetological Journal 3 (1): 8-18

Common english name: Taylor’s wolf snake



Gonionotophis savorgnani (MOCQUARD, 1887)

Short description:
A medium-sized snake, maximal length up to 160 cm, average about 130 cm. The dorsum deep grey or dark brown, the belly white, yellow or darker. The head big, broad, disting from the body by narrow neck. The eyes dark, tongue pink. The body triangular, significantly vertebral scale row bicarinate, dorsal scale rows widely separated by interstitial skin (not imbricated), subserrate median keel with fragmented secondary keels. Supralabials 7, third and fourth entering orbit. Tail 11 to 14% of the total length. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals in males 220-235, ventrals in females 225-239, subcaudals paired, 51-60 in males, 45-61 in females. The scales on the head rounded, slightly convex.
Eye moderate, its diameter one and a half times its distance from the lip; loreal slightly deeper than long; preocular usually single, postoculars 1-3; temporals usually 1+2, supralabials 6-7, infralabials 8-9. Dorsal scales in 15-21 rows on neck, 15 at midbody, 15 before the vent, vertebral row bicarinate; ventrals 220-235 in males, 225-239 in females; anal entire; subcaudals 51-60 in males, 45-61 in females.

Distribution:
For its hidden way of life little-known snake. In Ethiopia occur in the western lowlands, from Eritrea along the border with Sudan (Gambella) to the south and east. The specimen from Ethiopia was found in marshy grassland near Gambela at altitude of about 500 m asl.
Zimbabwe, S Mozambique, NE Namibia, N/SW Botswana, NE Republic of South Africa, Swaziland, Cameroon, Somalia, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, Angola, Kenya, S Sudan, Uganda, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Congo (Brazzaville), Cameroon, Gabon, Central African Republic, Eritrea, Ethiopia

Biology:
This species inhabits moist savanna, but also coastal forest and semi-arid regions, at altitudes up to 2000 m asl. It spends most of the day hiding in holes in the ground, in cavities in walls, in hollow logs or in deserted termite mounds, and emerges at night to hunt. Mehelya feeds mainly on snakes and small lizards, even venomous snakes. Is immune against the poison. Oviparous, females lays 5-13 eggs in size 50 x 25 mm. The incubation period of around three months, the youngs measured about 400 mm.

Description original:
Mocquard, F. 1887. Du genre Heterolepis et des espèces qui le composent, dont trois nouvelles. Bull. Soc. Philom. Paris (7) 11: 1-34

Common english name: Congo File Snake



Meizodon plumbiceps (BOETTGER 1893)

Meizodon plumbiceps Meizodon plumbiceps Meizodon plumbiceps Meizodon plumbiceps

Short description:
A small snake, maximum lenght 65 cm, averaging less 30 - 45 cm. The body thin, redish, with black dots arranged in longitudinal rows and with broad black band across the top mof the head and neck. The eyes big, pupil rounded, The tail 25% of the length of the body. Dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 21, ventrals in males 201 - 211, ventrals in females 215 - 235, subcaudals paired, in number 76 - 90.
16—-18 ziemlich gleich große Oberkieferz'ahne, von denen nur die beiden letzten etwas stärker, länger und weniger gekrümmt als die vorderen und nicht gefurcht sind. — Körper schlank; Schwanz verhältnismäßig lang. Schnauze zugespitzt, S—förmig gekrümmt, sehr schwach vorspringend; Rostrale breit, viel breiter als lang, an der Spitze abgerundet und von oben gut sichtbar; Sutur zwischen den Internasalen so lang wie die zwischen den Praefrontalen; Frontale so lang wie sein Abstand von der Schnauzenspitze, kürzer als die Parietalen; Frenale etwas länger als hoch, hinten stark zugespitzt. Auge ziemlich klein, halb so groß wie sein Abstand von der Schnauzerspitze; ein Praeoculare, das auf den Pileus übergreift; zwei Postocularen, das obere größer; vier bis sechs Temporalen in der Stellung: 2 + 2 oder 1 + 2, das obere Temporale der ersten Reihe, wenn vorhanden, sehr klein, die hinteren Temporalen oft in mehrere Schuppen, zertheilt. Supralabialen acht, von denen das vierte und fünfte an’s, Auge treten; vier Infralabialen in Berührung mit den vorderen Kinnschildern; hintere Kinnschilder lanzettlich; länger als die vorderen, von einander durch zwei Reihen von Schuppen getrennt. Schuppen glatt, mit einer sehr undeutlichen Endpore, Ventralen verrnndet. Schuppenformel: Squ. 21; G.4/4, V.202, A.1/1, Sc.87/87 +1.
Einfarbig röthlichgraugelb; Hinterkopf und Nacken dunkler, bleigrau, dies Grau hinten gegen die Halsfärbung geradlinig scharf abgesetzt; auf dem dritten bis vierten und auf dem sechsten und achten Supralabiale je eine größere gelbe Makel; auf den Suturen einiger Infralabialen und an der Kehle sparsame grauliche Fleckenu Bauch und Schwanzunterseite weißlich [BOETTGER as Coronella plumbiceps].

Distribution:
This species is found in eastern Ethiopia (Ogaden), southern Somalia and north-east Kenya.

Biology:
Poorly known species. They occur in coastal thicket, riverine woodland, dry savanna and semi-desert. Sometimes found in termite hill. They hunt lizards, frogs or small rodents. The females lays 2 - 4 relatively large eggs.

Description original:
Boettger,O.: Übersicht der von Prof. C. Keller anlässlich der Ruspoli'schen Expedition nach den Somaliländern gesammelten Reptilien und Batrachier. Zool. Anz. 16 (416): 113-119

Common english name: Black-headed smooth snake



Meizodon regularis FISCHER 1856

Meizodon regularis Meizodon regularis Meizodon regularis Meizodon regularis

Short description:
A small snake, maximal length 65 cm, on average 40 - 50 cm. The tail 20% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 19, ventrals 177 - 201, the anal scute divided, subcaudals 65 - 79. Eight supralabials, 4 and 5 contact the orbit. The color dark olivee or black, Two white vertical short bars in front and behind the eye.

Distribution:
Western Kenya, Cameroon, Togo, Ghana, north of Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan?, Central African Republic, Ethiopia.
Eastern, northern and western Ethiopia (Harar, Gondar, Gambella).

Biologie:
Natural history of the species unknow. Terrestrial snake, diurnal activity. Females lays 4 oblongate eggs in size 35 x 6 mm. The diest unknow, probably lizards and frogs.

Description:
Fischer, J.G.: Neue Schlangen des Hamburgischen Naturhistorischen Museums. Abhandl. Nat. Ver. Hamburg 3 (4): 79-116

Common english name: Eastern crowned smooth snake



Meizodon semiornatus (PETERS 1854)

Short description:
A small snake, maximal length 80 cm, on average 50-70 cm. Head slightly broader than the body. The color grey-brown or brown with pale reddish vertical stripes on the flanks and with vertebral broad darker stripe from head to tail. Juveniles are light grey or yellow-brown with a series of dark bands or bars on the front half of the body. The tail 25% of the total length. Midbody scale rows 21, ventrals 159-204, paired subcaudals 74-88, anal scute divided. Temporals 2+2 or 2+3.
Specimens from FMNH, (Voi, Kenya; Kijabe, Kenya): Midbody scale-rows 21; ventrals 182-190; anal divided; subcaudals 84-92; labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit. Larger specimen measures 542 (415+127) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
From the Republic of South Africa through East Africa as far as S Sudan, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania, Swaziland, Botswana, Zambia, Uganda. South Ethiopia (Dolo Odo). Possible occurrence on the west near the border with south Sudan (Meizodon semiornatus tchadensis CHABANAUD 1917).

Biology:
It inhabits semi-arid forests, and commiphora savannas at altitudes of about 0-2200 m asl. Terrestrial fast snake with daily activity. Poorly known species. The females lays 2-3 oblongate eggs in size 35 x 10mm. They hunt lizards, frogs and small rodents.

Description original:
Peters,W.C.H.: Diagnosen neuer Batrachier, welche zusammen mit der früher (24. Juli und 17. August) gegebenen Übersicht der Schlangen und Eidechsen mitgetheilt werden. Ber. Bekanntmach. Geeignet. Verhandl. Königl.-Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1854: 614-628

Common english name: Semiornate Smooth Snake



Aeluroglena cucullata BOULENGER, 1898

Aeluroglena cucullata
Aeluroglena cucullata Aeluroglena cucullata Aeluroglena cucullata Aeluroglena cucullata

Original description:
Snout rather long, slightly prominent. Rostral much broader than deep, not visible from above; internasals as long as the praefrontals ; frontal bell-shaped, once and a half as long as broad, broader than the supraocular, as long as its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the parietals; loreal twice as long as deep; a single large praeocular, narrowly separated from the frontal; two postoculars ; temporals 1+2; cight upper labials, fourth and fifth entering the eye ; five lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are shorter than the posterior; latter separated from each other by scales. Scales in 21 rows. Ventrals 216; anal divided; subcaudals 67. Pale buff above; head dark brown above, speckled with whitish, shading into a blackish blotch on the nape; two large cream-coloured spots on the upper lip, in front of and behind the eye; lower surface of head dark brown, with a cream-coloured spot on each side of the chin, and a band of the same colour below each mandibular ramus, sending up a process to meet the praaocular labial spot; the brown is prolonged as a median stripe along the throat ; lower parts cream-colour. Total length 375 mm; tail 75mm. A single female specimen from the Goolis Mountains.
Specimen from Ethiopia: Sheik Hussein, Ethiopia (12536), (Osgood, 1926). Midbody scale-rows 21; ventrals 201; anal divided; subcaudals 80; labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit. Total length 362 (276+86) mm. This, apparently the third known specimen, not only extends the geographical range but our knowledge of variation, for the type was a female with 216 ventrals and only 67 subcaudals [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Almost unknown. Type locality Golis Mountains, British Somaliland (nowadays Somaliland).
One mentioned locality from east Ethiopia (nowadays Oromia) (Sheikh Hussein, Ethiopia, 1386 m asl. - Chicago: Field Museum of Natural History,1936 - 1 (12536): Sheik Hussein, Ethiopia Osgood, 1926 ).

Behavior:
Unknow biology of this species. The type specimen was found during the day, in the sandy-rocky bush savanna.

Description original:
Boulenger, G. A. On a second collection of reptiles made by Mr. E. Lord-Phillips in Somaliland. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (7) 2: 130-133

Common english name: Somali Snake




Natriciteres olivacea (PETERS 1854)

Short descriptionS:
Medium-sized snake of variable coloration. Usually with a broad stripe along the back, usually dull green or some other bright colour, upperparts may be brown, olive-green, grey or blue-black, the chin and throat are white. Length up to 55 cm.. The tail 25% of the total length. Dorsal scales smooth. Labials yellow, dark-bordered. Midbody scale rows 19, ventrals 130 - 149 in males, 130 - 153 in females. Anal scute divided. Subcaudals 63 - 84 in males, 51 - 75 in females.
Specimen from "Belgian Congo" (FMNH): Midbody scale-rows 19; ventrals 140; anal divided; subcaudals?; labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit. A broad, dark, vertebral band; the lateral pigmentation encroaches on the edges of the ventrals.

Distribution:
S Mozambique, Zimbabwe, N Botswana, Zambia, Sudan, Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Congo (Brazzaville), Central African Republic, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Guinea, Mali, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Somalia, Uganda, Namibia. In Ethiopia Rift Valley, to the north lake Tana (Bahir Dar), to the west Gambella.

Biology:
This snake inhabits wetlands, pans and other marshy, damp areas; it is also found in grasslands, savanna and forest. It seeks refuge under stones, logs and crevices in clay banks of streams, but never ventures too far from water. Frogs and small fish form the bulk of its diet. The females lays 4 - 12 eggs in size 20 x 15 mm.

Description original:
Peters,W.C.H. Diagnosen neuer Batrachier, welche zusammen mit der früher (24. Juli und 17. August) gegebenen Übersicht der Schlangen und Eidechsen mitgetheilt werden. Ber. Bekanntmach. Geeignet. Verhandl. Königl.-Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1854: 614-628

Common english name: Olive Marsh Snake



Philothamnus battersbyi LOVERIDGE 1951

Philothamnus battersbyi Philothamnus battersbyi Philothamnus battersbyi Philothamnus battersbyi

Short description:
(Paratype variations in parentheses). Preocular 1 (rarely 2) postoculars 2 (rarely 3); temporals 1 ± 1 (right) and 1 ± 2 (left; 2 + 2 on one side of a Butandiga snake only); upper labials 8 (7-9), the fourth and fifth (rarely third and fourth or fifth and sixth) entering the orbit; lower labials 11 (8-11), the first 5 (4-6) in contact with the anterior sublinguals; midbody scale rows 15; ventrals 173 ( ♂♂ 147-169; ♀♀ 156-177); anal divided (rarely entire; in a Naivasha snake: U.S.N.M. 41701 only) ; subcaudals 98 ( ♂♂ 100-120; ♀♀ 90-111) [LOVERIDGE].
A Medium-sized, slender snake. The head rounded, eyes big, pupil rounded, iris bronze. The body slender, slightly dorsoventral flattened. Maximal length 100 cm, ussually 80 cm. The tail long, 26 - 32% of total lenght.
Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 152 - 176, subcaudals 88 - 129. The coloration bright green, sometimes green but bluish, the skin between scales black. Ventral side white or yellowish. The anal scute divided. Two supralabialia bordering the orbit. The inside of the mouth pinkish, not black.

Distribution:
E Uganda, E Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, south through Uganda and Kenya to NE Tanzania. In Ethiopia a relatively abundant species. The Ethiopian highlands west of the Rift Valley, north to Lake Tana. Usually in altitudes of 1300-2500 m asl.

Biology:
Diurnal. Usually is found in tall grass, in bushes and on trees. Does not live in dry savannas and semi-deserts areas, he prefers edges of forests and forests, meadows covered with long grass, or coastal vegetation along rivers and lakes in humid areas. Adaptable species, often lives in near of villages or even in villages.
They hunt mainly frogs, but also lizards and probably rodents. The females lays 3-15 eggs in size 30 x 20 mm.

Description original:
Loveridge, A.: Bull. Mus. comp. Zool. Harvard 106: 51

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin, Neèas, Lizler); Bonga (Trailin)

Common english name: Battersby's Green Snake

Philothamnus battersbyi - Habitat, near Bonga, Kaffa keflehager, Ethiopia



Philothamnus bequaerti (SCHMIDT 1923)

Didessa River Valley, W Ethiopia
Short description:
A slender, medium sized snake. Maximum length about 100 cm; eyes large, pupil round. The tail 28-30% of the total length; dorsal scales smooth; midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 155 - 179 laterally keeled, subcaudals paired 93 - 123. Anal scute divided (In Ethiopia: Ventrals in males 160 - 166, ventrals in females 165 - 170, subcaudals 109 - 110, subcaudals in females 110); supralabials 9, fourth, fifth and sixth bordering eye; temporals 1+1. The dorsum green, belly white or light yellow-green.

Distribution:
Central African Republic, Cameroon, Uganda, S Sudan, W Ethiopia, W/N Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire) West Ethiopia (Gambella, Metemma), Blue Nile Valley with tributaries (Didesa).

Biology:
It inhabits moist savanna at altitudes 400 - 1200 m asl. They climbs on the bushes and trees or reed vegetation around rivers. Oviparous. They feed frogs and lizards.

Description original:
Schmidt, K. P.: Contributions to the herpetology of the Belgian Congo based on the collection of the American Museum Congo Expedition, 1909-1915. Part II. Snakes, with field notes by Herbert Lang and James P. Chapin. Bull. Amer. Mus. nat. Hist. 49 (1): 1-146

Common english name: Bequaert's Green Snake



Philothamnus irregularis (LEACH 1819)

Short description:
Rostral broader than deep, the portion visible from above mea-suring one fourth to one third its distance from the frontal; inter-nasals as long as or a little shorter than the prmfrontals; frontal with concave lateral borders, once and one third to once and a half as long as broad, as long as or a little longer than its distance from the end of the snout, slightly shorter than the parietals; loreal once and a half to twice and a half as long as deep (rarely absent); one praaocular, in contact with or narrowly separated from the frontal; two (rarely three) postoculars; temporals usually 1+2, sometimes 1+1 or 2+2 ; nine upper labials, fourth, fifth, and sixth entering the eye; five lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are shorter than the posterior. Scales in 15 rows. Ventrals with moderately marked lateral keel, 150-182; anal divided (rarely entire); subcaudals 94-133. Green or olive above, scales often with a white spot at the base, with or without a black upper border; interstitial skin black; sometimes with black spots or irregular cross bands on the anterior part of the body ; greenish yellow inferiorly [BOULENGER].
A medium sized species, maximum length about 100 cm. The color green, labials bluish, the belly white. Eyes big, pupil round, iris golden. The dorsal scales on the lower edge with white stripe. Dark skin between scales. The inside of the mouth dark gray. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 178 - 185, subcaudals 110 - 115 not keeled, anal scute divided. 9 upper labials, 5 - 6 or 4 - 6 entering the eye, 1 preoculare, 2 postoculare, 1+1 temporale.

Distribution:
Most southwestern Ethiopia (Akobo, Dimma).

Biology:
Like other species of the genus. They hunt lizards and frogs. It inhabit rather wett areas.

Description original:
Leach in: Bowdich.: Miss. Cape Coast Cast. Ashantee, App. : 493, 494

Common english name: Northern Green Bush Snake



Philothamnus punctatus PETERS 1867

Short description:
A medium sized snake, maximal length about 120 cm, average 100 cm. The body slender, slightly dorsoventral flattened , the eye big, pupil rounded, iris yellow. Supraoculare protruding (make eyebrows). The color green, the body scales usually lack white basal spots. Belly white or pale green. Dorsal scales smooth, distinct keels on the subcaudal scales. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 157 - 188 keeled, subcaudals 126 - 170 paired. Two supralabials entering the orbit.

Distribution:
Its range extend from Mozambique northwards through eastern Tanzania and Kenya to Somalia and eastern Ethiopia.

Biology:
It inhabits shrubby and wooded savannah, including semi-arid areas at altitudes of about 1200 m asl. It is not as dependent on close proximity of water as other species of the same genus. Hunt in bushes rather small lizards as (Lygodactylus, Trachylepis, Hemidactylus...etc), but also chamaeleons, frogs or birds. The female lays elongated eggs in size 30 x 10 mm.

Description original:
Peters, Wilhem Carl Hartwig: Eine vorläufige Übersicht der aus dem Nachlass des Baron Carl von der Decken Stammenden und auf seiner Ostafrikanischen Reise gesammelten Säugethiere und Amphibien. Monatsber. königl. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. 1866 (December): 884-892

Common english name: Spotted Green Snake



Philothamnus semivariegatus (SMITH 1840)

Short description:
Rostral broader than deep, the portion visible from above measuring one fourth or one fifth its distance from the frontal; internasals as long as or a little shorter than the prfrontals; frontal with concave lateral borders, once and a half to once and two thirds as long as broad, as long as or a little longer than its distance from the end of the snout, as long as or a little shorter than the parietals; loreal at least twice as long as deep; one prceocular, in contact with or narrowly separated from the frontal; two postoculars; temporals 2 + 2 (rarely 2 +1, 1+ 2, or 1+1); nine upper labials, fifth and sixth, or fourth, fifth, and sixth, entering the eye; five lower labials in contact with the anterior chinshields, which are shorter than the posterior. Scales in 15 rows. Ventrals 169-207; anal divided; subeaudals 112-155. Green or olive above, with or without black spots or cross bars; greenish yellow inferiorly [BOULENGER].
A medium sized, slender snake, Maximal length about 130cm (the largest species of the genus), averages 70 - 90 cm. Eyes big, pupil rounded, iris golden. The tongue blue with black tip. Supraoculare made browridges. Tail 27 to 36% of the total length. The body dorsolateraly compressed. Dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 170 - 209 and keeled, subcaudals 98 - 166 paired and keeled. The anal scute divided. The coloration green, gray-green or brown-green, on the back transverse dark stripes. The underside yellowish or light green. The tail without transverse stripes.
Specimens fro FMNH (Goolis Mt. Somaliland; Ulambo, Tanganiyka Territory; Kabengere, "Belgian Congo): Midbody scale-rows 15; ventrals 171-189; anal divided; subcaudals 119-136; labials 9, fourth, fifth, and sixth entering the orbit; temporals 2+2 on seven sides, 1+2 on three sides. Largest specimen measures 989 (652+337) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
A very large area of distribution. Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, E Republic of South Africa, Swaziland, Natal, S Mozambique, Zambia, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Congo (Brazzaville), Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Sudan, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Guinea, Mali, Senegal, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Kenya, Angola, Gambia (HÅKANSSON 1981), Tanzania (incl. Zanzibar), Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone Northern, western and southern Ethiopia (Gambella, Itang, Moyale, Dolo Odo). North to Eritrea.

Biology:
Philothamnus semivariegatus are mostly found in trees in bush and forest areas, where they hunt lizards and treefrogs. They are excellent climbers and swimmers, have very good eyesight, and are highly alert snakes. They are not territorial, and will roam great distances in search for food. Philothamnus semivariegatus are very common and completely harmless. They are well camouflaged, naturally very nervous, and quick to escape from any potential threat. As such, suburban sightings are rare. Females can lay between 3 and 12 elongate eggs in size 30 x 10 mm. The hatchling is about 25 cm in total length.

Description original:
Smith,A.: Illustrations of the zoology of South Africa, Reptilia. Smith, Elder & Co., London

Common english name: Spotted Bush Snake



Crotaphopeltis degeni (BOULENGER 1906)

Crotaphopeltis degeni, Gambella, W Ethiopia
Crotaphopeltis degeni Crotaphopeltis degeni Crotaphopeltis degeni Crotaphopeltis degeni

Short description:
A small snake, maximal length of about 60 cm. The eyes big, pupil vertical. The tail 10% of the total length. For coloring look at pictures above. Midbody scale rows 19, ventrals 163-183, subcaudals 28-40 paired.
A semiaquatic species of Crotaphopeltis of the Central African Plateau with the following character combination: 19 scale rows at mid-body, dorsal scales smooth all over the body; 15-19 + II maxillary teeth; 31-41 (male) and 25-38 (female) subcaudals; hemipenis extending to subcaudal scute No.7-II and usually provided with five enlarged spines proximally; dorsum dark brown, grey or almost black, no white specks or temporal marks, pigment On lower jaw usually restricted to the last infralabial; venter cream or pale yellowish; underside of tail whitish, with a more or less distinctly pigmented, median stripe, usually but not always, starting just behind the anal shield [from RASMUSSEN et al. 2000].
Rostral small, a little broader than deep, just visible from above; internasals not or but slightly broader than long, much shorter than the praefrontals; frontal once and a half as long as broad, a little longer than its distance from the end of the snout, shorter than the parietals; loreal much longer than deep; one prae and two postoculars; temporals 1 +2; eight upper labials, fourth and fifth or third, fourth, and fifth entering the eye; three pairs of chin-shields, the anterior longer than broad and in contact with five lower labials. Scales smooth, in 19 rows. Ventrals 170—175 ; anal entire; subcaudals 32—33. Dark brown above, the outer rows of scales lighter, or whitish in the centre; upper lip and lower parts yellowish White, with a brown line along the middle of the tail [according to BOULENGER].

Distribution:
S Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania (relict population), E Central African Republic, Cameroon. In Ethiopia, the western part of the Ethiopian highlands. Moist savanna around Gambella.

Biology:
It inhabits moist lowland savannas in central and east Africa and its dependent on wet environment. Nocturnal species, and mostly terrestrial snake.
The fameles lays 5 - 8 eggs. They hunt almost exclusively frogs.

Description original:
Boulenger,G.A.: Additions to the herptetology of British East Africa. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 2: 570-572

Our records:
Gambella, Baro hotel (Kucera, Trailin, Novak)

Common english name: Degen’s Herald Snake

Crotaphopeltis degeni - Habitat, 40 km west from Gambella, Illubabor keflehager, Ethiopia



Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia (LAURENTI 1768)

Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia
Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia

Short description:
A small snake. It can be identified by their olive green or grey body, multiple white speckles, distinctive black head and red, yellow or white (in Ethiopia) lip. The underside white. They can grow to an average length of 70 cm but may reach up to 1 meter in length. Tail 11-15% of the total length. Dorsal scales smoot, at the end of the body keeled. Midbody scale rows 19-21, ventrals in males 155-181, ventrals in females 163-181, subcaudals in males 37-45, subcaudals in females 32-39. The tongue pink with lighter tip.


Specimens from FMNH: Midbody scale-rows 19-21; ventrals 161-178; anal entire; subcaudals 36-47; labials 8-9, third, fourth, and fifth, or fourth and fifth, or fourth, fifth, and sixth entering the orbit; preocular 1, not in contact with the frontal; temporals 1+2; on right side of No.4037, 1+1+2. Largest specimen measures 613 (528+85) mm [LOVERIDGE]. Distribution:
Almost all of Africa south of the Sahara. On the whole territory of Ethiopia, except very arid areas at altitudes 1000 - 2500 m asl.

Biology:
It favor marshy areas in lowland forest, moist savanna and grasslands. Terrestrial and nocturnal species. Actively hunting frogs (mostly toads) at night, during the day is hidden under rocks, under the truncks or under the bark of fallen trees. Slightly venomous snake, but for humans is not dangerous. When threatened it loops its body, extremelly flattening its head into a typical triangle and quickly strikes in the direction of incoming threat. Females lays between 6 and 19 eggs in size 30x15 mm, incubation period 50-80 days.

Description original:
Laurenti, J. N.: Specimen medicum, exhibens synopsin reptilium emendatam cum experimentis circa venena et antidota reptilium austracorum, quod authoritate et consensu. Vienna, Joan. Thomae, 217 pp.

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin, Lizler, Neèas); Filtu (Pavel Novák); Jinka (Trailin); Jimma (Trailin)

Common english name: White-lipped Herald Snake

Crotaphopeltis hotamboeia - Habitat, Jimma, Kaffa keflehager, Ethiopia



Aprosdoketophis andreonei Wallach, Lanza & Nistri 2010

Short description:
Almost unknown snake. Its small, exceeding 400 mm total length, close to genus Crotaphopeltis. The color olive-brown, without significant pattern. Ventrals = 146, subcaudals = 45, supralabials = 8, two supralabiale bordered orbit. Upper labials = 9, anal scute divided. Pupil round. The ratio of the length of the body and tail of 0.17.
Snout-vent length 324 mm, tail length 68 mm, total length 392 mm, tail length 17.2% total length; dorsal scales smooth, lacking apical pits and arranged in 19-19-15 longitudinal rows, outer row I the largest in size; ventrals feebly angulate, 146 (Dowling method) or 148 (traditional), not keeled or notched; scale row reduction formula (recount system): 19 8+9=8 (85)/8+9=8(85) 17 3+4=3 (92)/3+4=3 (92) 15 (146); cloacal shield divided, with oblique suture towards the right side; 46/45 paired and rounded subcaudals, terminal spine equal in length to last subcaudal; head feebly distinct from neck; 8 supralabials with 4th and 5th entering orbit, 7th supralabial the largest; nasal shield divided, nostril adjacent to dorsal border, directed laterally at about 458, with an anterior flap that may represent a valve, ventral nasal suture directed downward and caudad; 1 loreal, parallelogram-shaped and as tall as broad, in contact with 2nd and 3rd supralabial; 1 preocular; moderate-sized eye with horizontal diameter 0.56 eye-snout distance, circular pupil; 2 equal sized postoculars; 1+2 temporals, anterior temporal largest and 2.75 times as long as deep; rostral with rounded dorsal apex and weak ventral concavity, not separating internasals; internasals paired with scalloped borders; prefrontals paired, 1.5 times the size of internasals, also with rounded edges; frontal pentagonal with nearly parallel lateral borders, length/width ratio 1.55; supraoculars paired, broader caudally than cranially; parietals paired and largest shields on head, their posterior borders forming a V-shaped notch along midline; 9 infralabials with first 4 pairs contacting anterior genials, 5th infralabial the largest; 2 pair of genials, parallel and in contact with one another, 1st pair the largest; 5 gulars between posterior genials and first (Dowling) ventral. Umbilical scar on ventral 115 (=21.9% total ventrals craniad of vent) [according to WALLACH, LANZA, NISTRI].

Note:
Unknown terrestrial snake. Described by one specimen (MZUT R-3484, adult female collected in years 1922 - 1923 Cesarini). About the way of life is not known.

Distribution:
Southern Somalia, type locality Addur (or Xuddor, Oddur] at altitude 500 m asl., near from ethiopian border. Occurrence in Ethiopia unrecorded but it can be presumed.

Description original:
VAN WALLACH, BENEDETTO LANZA & ANNAMARIA NISTRI 2010: Aprosdoketophis andreonei, a new genus and species of snake from Somalia (Serpentes: Colubridae:Boiginae), African Journal of Herpetology, Vol. 59, No. 2, October 2010, 95 - 110.



Psammophis angolensis (BOCAGE 1872)

Short decsription:
A small snake, maximal length of about 50 cm, aprox. 30 - 40 cm. Eye big, pupil rounded, iris red-brown, the tongue black. Black vertebral band, the flanck red-brown. The head and neck are patterned with a series black crossbars separated by white stripes. The belly white.
Nostril pierced between 2 nasals; preocular 1, usually widely separated from frontal; postoculars 2; temporals usually1+2; supralabials 8 (rarely 6, 7 or 9), the fourth & fifth (rarely third & fourth, fourth only or fifth & sixth) entering orbit; infralabials 8 (rarely 7 or 9), the first 4 (rarely or 5) in contact with anterior sublinguals; dorsal scales in 11-11-11 rows (9 in NMZB 1075 only); ventrals 1-157; cloacal shield divided; subcaudals 58-80. Head dark brown, three narrow yellow transverse bands posteriorly, supralabials white; neck dark brown with one or two grey crossbands which broaden laterally, a dark brown black-edged dorsal band three scales wide, greyish or yellowish laterally, sometimes with black hairlines through the outer two scale rows. Ventrum and lower half of outer scale row white or yellow, uniform or with an ill defined lateral series of dark flecks, sometimes a midventral pale orange band present [from BROADLEY 2002].
Rostral broader than deep, visible from above; snout once and a quarter to once and a half as long as the eye; internasals half to two thirds as long as the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, slightly narrower or broader than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 shields; loreal once and a half to twice as long as deep; preocular 1, separated from, rarely in contact with, the frontal; postoculars 2, rarely 3; temporals 1 + 2, rarely 2 + 2; upper labials 8, rarely 7, fourth and fifth entering the orbit; 4, rarely 5, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Mdbody scales in 11 rows; ventrals 141— 156; anal divided; subcaudals 57—82.
Coloration: Above, pale or dark olive; head dark olive anteriorly, blackish posteriorly, with three yellow transverse lines, the first across the frontal, the second across the parietals, the third behind the parietals; two black crossbands, separated by a yellowish interspace, may be present on neck; labials yellowish white; a dark olive or blackish vertebral stripe, mostly three scales wide, and finely edged with black on dorsurn and tail; one or two more or less distinct dark lines or series of dots along each side. Below, white, a fine lateral line on either side of the ventrals, present or absent [according to LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Ranging from Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, through Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, westwards to Angola and southwards through Zimbabwe to South Africa. In Ethiopia, an isolated population in the highlands south of Lake Tana (Dongyia).

Biology:
Secretly living snake, from the moist, grassland and wooded savannah at altitudes 0 - 2000 m asl. The females lays 2 - 6 elongated eggs in size 15 x 5 mm. The snake actively forages for lizards and frogs.

Description original:
Bocage, J. V. B.: Diagnoses de quelques espéces nouvelles de Reptiles d'Afrique occidentale. Jorn. Sci. Lisbon 4: 72-82.

Common english name: Dwarf Sand Snake



Psammophis biseriatus PETERS 1881


Short description:
A medium-sized, slender snake, maximal length about 100 cm, on average 70 cm. A slender body, the tail 35-40% of the total length. The scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 143 - 155, subcaudals 104 - 134. Coloring gray or olive, brown or brown-red vertebral band, bordered by dark discontinuous stripes (see pictures).
Rostral broader than deep, visible from above; snout once and a half to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 shields; loreal twice to thrice as long as deep; preocular 1, rarely 2, broadly, rarely narrowly, in contact with the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3, rarely 1 + 2 or 1 + 3; upper labials 9, very rarely 8, fifth and sixth, or very rarely fourth and fifth, fourth, fifth and sixth, or sixth and seventh entering the orbit; 5, rarely 4, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 15 rows; ventrals1 138—156; anal divided, very rarely entire; subcaudals 100-130.
Coloration: Above, grayish or pale brown, head uniform or with dark brown or reddish-brown, black-edged spots, and usually a dark cross—band on the occiput; a dark streak on each side of the head, passing through the eye; lips white with black or brown spots; a more or less interrupted cream-colored vertebral line down the centre of a dark dorsal band that is flanked by reddish-brown, black-edged spots. Below, belly grayish, speckled with black and white.
Specimen from FMNH (Goolis Mt., Somaliland; Lake Manka, Tanganiyka Territory): Midbody scale-rows 15; ventrals 144-148; anal divided; subcaudals 98-117; labials 9, fourth, fifth, and sixth, or fifth and sixth entering the orbit; temporals 2+3 and 2+2. Largest specimen measures 669 (442+227) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
S Somalia, Kenya, NE Tanzania, S Libya, Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda. Southern and eastern Ethiopia. From Omo in the south, eastwards through Borana (Dolo Odo) into east (Dire Dawa).
Localities in LOVERIDGE.
Italian Somaliland: Afghedud; Afgoi; Belet Amin; Biomal; Caaio to Andurgab; Chisimaio (Kismayu); Dargali to Wagghiole; Garoe; Giuba (Juba) River; Giumbo (Jumbo); Lugh; Mahaddei Uen; Martis or Dinsai; Mofi; Mogadiscio; Neghelli; Oddur; Ted; Tobungab; Turfa; Uebi Scebeli; Urandi.

Biology:
Dry savanna and semi-deserts up to 1300 m asl. Mostly terrestrial snake. The snake actively hunt for lizards and frogs. The females lays 2 - 4 elongate eggs.

Description original:
Peters, Wilhem Carl Hartwig: Herpetologische Mittheilungen (Excrescenzen des Männchens von Rana gigas Blyth in der Paarungszeit, Psammophis biseriatus und breviceps, Dinodon cancellatum Dum. Bibr. = Lycodon rufozonatus Cantor, Lycodon napei Dum. Bibr. = Lycodon striatus Shaw, bau des Schädels von Uraeotyphlus oxyurus (Dum. Bibr.). Sitzungsberichte der Gesellschaft naturforschender Freunde zu Berlin 1881 (6): 87-91

Our records:
Dire Dawa (Tomáš Mazuch)

Common english name: Link-marked Sand Snake

Psammophis biseriatus - Habitat, Dire Dawa, Harerge keflehager, Ethiopia



Psammophis lineatus (DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854)
Dromophis lineatus

Short description:
A medium sized snake, maximal length 120 cm, on average 70 - 100 cm. The body muscled, tail long, 1/3 of total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 138 - 167, subcaudals 82 - 99 paired. The dorsum is olive or brown, with three longitudinal stripes, the stripes on both flancks ar yellowish, vertebral band is brown. Two or three transverse yellow stripes on the neck, much more pronounced in juveniles. The belly cream or greenish-yellow, each of the more anterior ventrals shields usually has a short, dark transverse bar at its outer edge.
Rostral broader than or as broad as deep, visible from above; snout once and a third to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals one third to one half as long as the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than, as broad as, or slightly broader than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, as long as or slightly longer or slightly shorter than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 shields; loreal once and a third to once and two thirds as long as deep; preocular 1, separated from the frontal; postoculars 2, rarely 1 or 3; temporals 1 + 1 or 1 + 2 or 1 + 3, very rarely 2 + 2 or 2 + 3; upper labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit; 4, rarely 5, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals which are slightly shorter than or as long as the posterior. midbody scales in 17 rows; ventrals 138-159; anal divided; subcaudals 83—105.
Coloration: Above, olive; head of young with light transverse bars on the occiput and nape, these markings sometimes disappearing in the adults, pre- and postoculars and lips greenish yellow, some of the labials with black sutures; dorsal scales mostly black-edged; three greenish-yellow longitudinal lines, one on the vertebral row of scales, the others on the fourth and fifth rows; outer scale-row greenish yellow bordered above with black. Below, belly and tail greenish yellow or pale green, uniform or with a series of black dots or short transverse lines on the outer ends of the ventrals [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
W Zimbabwe (Caprivi Strip), Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Congo (Brazzaville), Central African Republic, Sudan, Senegal, S Mali, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Burkina Faso, Very wide range of distribution. Benin, Togo, Nigeria, W Niger, Chad, Ethiopia, Angola, Uganda, Cameroon, Kenya [HR 12: 65], Botswana, Tanzania, Gambia, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, N Malawi, Uganda, Zambia
Moist lowland savannas on the western border of Ethiopia (Gambella).

Biology:
Diurnal snake. Its dependent on wet environment, close to lakes or rivers. They very good swims, crawls through reed vegetation and through swamps and hunt frogs or lizards. The females lays 6 - 10 eggs in size 30 x 15 mm. Juveniles are more markedly colored.

Description original:
Duméril, A. M. C., BIBRON, G. & DUMÉRIL, A. H. A.,: Erpétologie générale ou histoire naturelle complète des reptiles. Tome septième. Deuxième partie, comprenant l'histoire des serpents venimeux. Paris, Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret: i-xii + 781-1536

Common english name: Lined Olympic Snake



Psammophis pulcher BOULENGER 1895

Short description:
Snout once and two thirds as long as the eye. Eostral broader than deep, visible from above; nostril between two shields; internasals much shorter than the prffifrontals; frontal twice and a half as long as broad, a little narrower than the supraocular, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, nearly as long as the parietals; loreal once and two thirds as long as deep; two prseoculars, upper not reaching the frontal; two postoculars; temporals 1+2; eight upper labials, third deeper than fourth, fourth and fifth entering the eye, fifth as long as the eye; four lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are a little shorter than the posterior. Scales in 13 rows. Ventrals 144; anal divided ; subcaudals 108. Pale brownish above, with an orange black-edged vertebral stripe and a black lateral streak, running along the second row of scales and extending to the end of the snout after passing through the eye; upper lip, outer row of scales, and outer ends of ventrals white ; venti-als yellow in the middle, with an orange line on each side [According to BOULENGER].
Rostral broader than deep, visible from above; snout once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle slightly narrower than a supraocular, slightly shorter than a parietal, longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 shields; loreal once and two thirds as long as deep; preoculars 2, separated from the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 1 + 2; upper labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit; 4 lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 131 rows; ventrals 144; anal divided; subcaudals 108.
Coloration: Above, pale brownish, with an orange black-edged vertebral stripe, a black lateral streak along the second scale-row passes through the eye and reaches the rostral; upper lip, outer scale-row, and outer ends of ventrals white. Below, ventrals yellow in the middle with an orange line on either side [according to LOVERIDGE].
A small snake, maximal length of about 50 cm. The tail 36 to 39% of the total length, dorsal scales smooth.
Midbody scale rows 13, ventrals 140 - 147, subcaudals 97 - 108 and paired. The dorsum pale grey-brown with prominent narrow orange-brown vertebral stripe bordered with black. The labials white.

Distribution:
Relatively rare species. Eastern Ethiopia (Ogaden), NW Kenya and probably Somalia.

Biology:
Poorly known species. Diurnal. Females lays eggs. They hunts small lizards.

Description original:
Boulenger, G.A.: An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Dr. A. Donaldson Smith in western Somaliland and the Galla Country. Proc. zool. Soc. Lond.: 530-540

Common english name: Beautiful Sand snake



Psammophis punctulatus DUMÉRIL,BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854


Short description:
A long slender snake, the maximum length of about 190 cm, on average 140 cm. Eye big, pupil rounded, iris goldish, the tail 1/3 of the total length. 9 supralabials, usually 5 and 6 enter the eye, 10 infralabials, 170-198 ventrals, 158-178 paired subcaudals, dorsals smooth, 17 mid-body scale rows, anal scute divided. The basic color gray-yellow, from neckt to the tip of tail brown broad vertebral band, which is bordered by pale lines. The top of head orange (ssp. trivirgatus) or dark (ssp.punctulatus). Labials white. The belly white with scattered black spots.
Psammophis punctulatus punctulatus: Rostral broader than or as broad as deep, visible from above; snout once and a half to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, much narrower than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, as long as or usually longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 or 3 shields; loreal nearly twice to twice and a half as long as deep; preocular 1, in contact with, rarely separated from, the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3; upper labials 9, rarely 8, fifth and sixth, rarely fourth and fifth or third, fourth and fifth, entering the orbit; 5 lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior; midbody scales in 17 rows; ventrals 176—196; anal divided; subcaudals 158-178.
Coloration. Above, yellow or white, head and nape olive-gray, buff, or reddish, uniform or speckled with black; a single black vertebral stripe along the body turning to reddish brown on tail, bifurcating anteriorly, each branch, as a black or brown streak, sometimes extending through the eye to the end of the snout; sides, belly, and underside of tail, grayish or greenish heavily speckled with black [according to LOVERIDGE].
Psammophis punctulatus trivirgatus: Rostral broader than or as broad as deep, visible from above; snout once and a half to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, much narrower than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, as long as or usually longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 or 3 shields; loreal twice to thrice as long as deep; preocular 1, in contact with, rarely separated from, the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3, rarely 1 + 2; upper labials 9, rarely 8, fifth and sixth, rarely fourth and fifth or third, fourth and fifth, entering the orbit; 5 lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 17 rows; ventrals 177-197; anal divided; subcaudals1 143-163.
Coloration. Above, yellow or white, head and nape olive-gray, buff, or reddish, uniform, or speckled with black; three black stripes along the body, the vertebral broadest and bifurcating anteriorly, each branch, as a black or brown streak, sometimes extending through the eye to the end of the snout; sides, belly, and underside of tail, grayish or greenish heavily speckled with black [according to LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Sudan, N Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Uganda, N Somalia, NE Kenya, N Tanzania.
Southern, eastern and northeastern Ethiopia in the north to Eritrea.
Psammophis punctulatus punctulatus DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1854 - The northern part of the distribution area (Awash, Dire Dawa, Harar).
Psammophis punctulatus trivirgatus (PETERS 1878) - South and southeast Ethiopia (Muyi, Arbore, Dolo Odo, Wabi Shebelle, Gode).

Biology:
It inhabit dry and semi-desert savannah at altitude 1400 m asl. Diurnal. Very fast and active snake. They hunt mainly lizards (Latastia, Trachylepis, Heliobolus, Philochortus ...). The females lays up to 15 eggs in size 30 x 10 mm. Slightly venomous snake, rear fanged. Harmless for human, however, locally may cause a slight swelling and pain.

Description original:
Duméril, A. M. C., BIBRON, G. & DUMÉRIL, A. H. A.,: Erpétologie générale ou histoire naturelle complète des reptiles. Tome septième. Deuxième partie, comprenant l'histoire des serpents venimeux. Paris, Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret: i-xii + 781-1536

Our records:
Gewane (Mazuch, Trailin, Novak)

Common english name: Speckled Sand Racer

Psammophis punctulatus - Habitat, Gewanne, Wello keflehager, Ethiopia



Psammophis schokari (FORSKAL 1775)


Short description:
A medium to large, slender snake. Maximal length 150 cm, usually less, about 100 cm. The head elongated. Eyes big, pupil rounded, iris gold with black edge. nostril in a divided nasal; loreal elongate, same length as nasals; 9 supralabials, usually fifth and sixth enter the eye, 10-12 infralabials; 163-179 ventrals, 109-121 paired subcaudals, dorsals smooth, 17 scale rows around mid-body, anal divided. Dorsum light sandy-gray; variably striped with dark stripes; a dark stripe extends from snout to beyond the temporal area, some dark marbling on top of head shields. Venter white or yellowish with variable dark longitudinal stripes. Very variable snake in color. The maximum size of the males in Eritrea and Somaliland 80 cm, in females 70 cm.
Rostral broader than deep, Visible from above; snout once and a third to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than a supraocular, as long as a parietal, as long as or slightly longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 or 3 shields; loreal once and two thirds to four times as long as deep; preocular 1, rarely 2, in contact with, rarely separated from, the frontal; postoculars 2, rarely 3; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3, rarely 1 + 2; upper labials 9, rarely 8 or 10, fifth and sixth, rarely fourth and fifth or sixth and seventh, entering the orbit; 5, rarely 4 or 6, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 17, rarely 19, rows; ventrals 156—205; anal divided; subcaudals 93-149.
Coloration. Very variable. Above, reddish, yellowish, grayish, or pale olive; usually a dark streak on each side of the head passing through the eye; lips with or without dark spots; body striped or spotted with darker, sometimes uniform. Below, uniform or spotted with darker, laterally with or without one or two rows of more or less distinct dark lines or series of dashes, sometimes enclosing a central, ribbon-like grayish streak [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Very wide distribution. NW India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, S Turkmenistan. Saudi Arabia, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, Iran, Yemen.
In Africa Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Sinai, Israel, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, In Ethiopia is distribution limited to the northeast and east on border area between Djibouti, Somalia and Eritrea. In Eritrea much more frequent.
It is a Sahara-Sinhalese element in the Ethiopian herpetofauna.

Biology:
Diurnal, fast snake. It inhabit stony desert and semi-desert areas, coastal plains. They hunt lizards, small rodents, probably birds. Oviparous. Rear fanged, harmless.

Description original:
Forskål,P.: Descriptiones animalium, avium, amphibiorum, piscium, insectorum, vermium; quae in itinere Orientali observavit Petrus Forskål. Mölleri, Hauniae, xxxiv + 164 pp.

Common english name: Forskal Sand Snake

Psammophis schokari - Habitat, near coast of Red Sea, Semenawi Key Bahri, Eritrea


Psammophis sibilans (LINNAEUS, 1758)


Short description:
Closely related to P.phillipsi and both may represent the same species. A medium to large, slender snake. Maximal total length up to 1,5 m. Tail long, up to about 0.28-0.30 of the total length. Eight supralabials, fourth and fifth enter the orbit, 10-12 infralabials, 158-172 ventrals, 91-117 paired subcaudals, dorsals smooth. 17 midbody scale rows, anal shield divided. The dorsum brown, with 3 broad brown-gray longitudinal stripes, edged with black, a thin vertebral line. Preocular, postoculars and supralabials yellow. Several transverse dark bars on the posterior of the head and nape. Ventrals yellow, often with two lateral dark lines.
Rostral broader than or as broad as deep, Visible from above; snout once and a third to twice1 as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than or equal to a supraocular, as long as or slightly longer or shorter than a parietal, as long as or slightly longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 or 3 shields; loreal once and a half to twice and a half as long as deep; preocular 1, rarely 2, usually separated from, rarely in contact with, the frontal; postoculars 2, rarely 3; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3, rarely 2 + 1, 1 + 1, 1 + 2, or 3 + 3; upper labials 8, rarely 7 or 9, fourth and fifth, rarely third and fourth, fifth and sixth, or fourth, fifth and sixth, 1 entering the orbit; 4, rarely 5, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than or as long as the posterior. Midbody scales in 17 rows; ventrals 151—1862; anal divided, rarely entire; subcaudals3 78—121.
Coloration. Very variable. Boulenger (1896d) furnishes descriptions of six color forms, and the literature teems with variants of these. Above, olive, brown, or yellowish; head of young usually with yellow, black-edged longitudinal streaks anteriorly and transverse ones posteriorly, these markings usually disappearing in the adults; lips yellowish white with, or without, dark spots; body usually uniform or with a narrow yellow vertebral line and a yellow band along each side of the back. Below, plumbeous gray or yellowish white, uniform, or young with a series of dusky lateral dashes longitudinally arranged, or adults (in Central Lake Region and Sudan) with a faint brown lateral line, rarely distinct as in subtaenv‘iatus; some Angolan specimens exhibit short horizontal dashes corresponding with each ventral as in Dromophis lineatus. The pigmentation of the iris, arrangement of vessels and circular pupil are described by Mann (1931) [according to LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
North and northeast Africa, partly sub-saharan Africa. From the west to east. Cameroon, Nigeria, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Mauritania, Central African Republic, Chad, Senegal, Uganda, Ethiopia and Eritrea. In Ethiopia mostly central and northern part. The whole of Eritrea. In Ethiopia is often confused with Psammophis sudanensis.
Localities according to LOVERIDGE:
Eritrea: Adi Ugri; Anseba Valley; Barentu; Chenafena; Cheren; Elaghim (Elaghin); Ghinda; May Mefles (Mabellis); Maldi; Seganeyti.
Ethiopia: Arusi; Ado (Audo) Bale Mountains; Daro Takle (Tacle); Gondar; Hawash; Sheik Hussein.
Somaliland: Inland of Berbera (Boulenger, 1896d); Las Gore, Warsingali (Ouarsangueilis).
Somalia: Abdallah; Belet Amin; Duca degli Abruzzi; Kismayu and Mofi.

Biology:
In Ethiopia it inhabit forests, semi-desert and nearly desert areas, but also cultivated places near villages and towns, at altitudes from 1000 to 2200 m asl. It is very tolerating species to ecological change. They feed usually on rodents, lizards, frogs, or birds. The females lays up to 20 eggs.

Original description:
Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii, Holmiæ. 10th Edition: 824 pp.

Our records:
Mersu (Trailin, Novak); Mt.Fantale (Novak); Asmara (Trailin); Asmara (Novak, Mazuch)

Common english name: Striped Sand Snake

Psammophis sibilans - Habitat, Asmara suburb - north, Zoba Maakel, Eritrea


Psammophis sudanensis WERNER, 1919


Short description:
Long and slender snake, maximal length of about 120 cm, aprox. 70 cm. The yes big, pupil rounded. ocas dlouhý až 35% celkové délky. Šupiny hladké. Midbody scale rows 17, supralabials 9, ventralia 155 - 181, subcaudalia 106 - 132, anal scute divided. Head brown above, uniform, or more often with largely transverse grey markings which may be present only posteriorly, continuing onto the neck as a series of faint crossbars. A yellow or white dorsolateral stripe on scale rows 4 and 5 is black-edged. The underside white, ventralia lined with narrow dark strip.
Rostral broader than or as broad as deep, visible from above; snout once and a half to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than or equal to a supraocular, as long as or slightly longer or slightly shorter than a parietal, as long as or usually longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2, very rarely 3, shields; loreal twice to twice and a half as long as deep; preocular 1, rarely 2, separated from, rarely in contact with, the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 + 3, rarely 1 + 2; upper labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit; 4, very rarely 5, lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are as long as or shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 17 rows; ventrals 148—169; anal divided; subcaudals 92—114.
Coloration. Above brown or olive; a light vertical line from the tip of the snout across the rostral to the posterior end of the frontal where it meets with the first of three light transverse stripes of which the hindmost is just behind the parietals; a black line across the rostral is continued along the upper border of the upper labials which are yellowish, with or without black spots; dorsum with or without a fine yellow vertebral line, usually the seven middle dorsal scale-rows darker, edged with black, and separated from the sides by a pair of more or less distinct pale longitudinal stripes. Below, a band of bright yellow down the centre of the ventrals flanked on either side by a sharply defined black line which separates it from the usually paler or white band occupying the outer edges of the ventrals and the lower half of the outer scale-row, this coloration continued at least on to anterior part of tail [according to LOVERIDGE as Psammophis subtaeniatus sudanensis].

Distribution:
N Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, E Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), NE Republic of South Africa, Swaziland, S Angola, Zambia, E Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Sudan, Central African Republic, Ethiopia. Western and central Ethiopia at the altitudes about 2000 m asl.(Bedelle, Metu).
Bedesa (Oromia) in LOVERIDGE

Biology:
Adaptable species. Diurnal. It inhabits mostly savannas, but also mountain meadows or forest edges. Actively hunt lizards and other snakes. Oviparous.

Description original:
Peters,W. Naturwissenschaftliche Reise nach Mossambique auf Befehl seiner Majestät es Königs Friedrich Wilhelm IV. in den Jahren 1842 bis 1848 ausgefeführt von Wilhelm C. Peters. Zoologie III. Amphibien. Berlin (Reimer), 191pp.

Our records:
Bedelle (Trailin, Neèas, Lizler); Luqa (Trailin)

Psammophis subtaeniatus - Habitat, Luqua, Omo region, Gamo Gofa keflehager, Ethiopia


Psammophis tanganicus LOVERIDGE 1940

Short description:
A medium sized snake, maximal length 100 cm, on average 70 - 80 cm. The head long, eyes big, pupil rounded, iris yellow-brown. The body slender, the tail 35-40% of the total length. Dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 15, ventrals 146 - 165, subcaudals 81 - 114. The color variable. Ventral band is gray, lined by dark spots. The flanks lighter. The labials white or orange.
Description of type: Middbody scales in 15 rows; ventrals 151; anal divided; subcaudals 114; preocular 1; postoculars 2; labials 9, the fourth, fifth and sixth entering the orbit. It is this last character alone which separates this form from the typical race.
Rostral broader than deep, visible from above; snout once and a third to once and two thirds as long as the eye; internasals much shorter than the prefrontals; frontal, in the middle, narrower than a supraocular, as long as or slightly shorter than a parietal, longer than its distance from the end of the snout; nostril between 2 shields; loreal twice to thrice3 as long as deep; preocular 1, rarely 2, broadly, rarely narrowly, in contact with the frontal; postoculars 2; temporals 2 + 2 or 2 -|— 3, rarely 1 + 2 or 1 + 3; upper labials 9, rarely 8 or 10, fourth, fifth and sixth, rarely third, fourth and fifth, entering the orbit; 5 lower labials in contact with the anterior sublinguals, which are shorter than the posterior. Midbody scales in 15 rows; ventrals 142—168; anal divided; subcaudals 97—117 [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
S Libya through Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, to C Tanzania. Central and eastern Ethiopia (Awash, Ogaden, Dire Dawa) to the north Eritrea.
Eritrea: Beilul near Assab.
Ethiopia: Abdallah; Dalmnah; Harrar; Hinna (Imi region), Wabe Shebelle; Magala, Umberto Island; Ogaden; Sammane; San Kural; Uebi Mana.
Somaliland: Adi Haliss; Berbera to Obbia; Buran district; Gan Lebar; Haud; Hudin; Jifa Uri; Sheik, Golis Mountains; Warabod.
Somalia: Bendar Beila; Dolo; Gardo and Hafun, Migiurtina; Nogal; Rahanuin country; Uebi Scebeli.
[According to LOVERIDGE]

Biology:
Occupies semi-arid regions and dry Acacia-shrubland savannas. Way of life is unknown. They hunt small lizards. Oviparous.

Description original:
Loveridge: Revision of the African snakes of the genera Dromophis and Psammophis. Bull. Mus. comp. Zool. Harvard 87: 1-70

Common english name: Tanganyika Sand Snake



Psammophylax multisquamis (LOVERIDGE 1932)


Short description:
A medium sized snake, maximal length 140 cm, on average 60 - 90 cm. Tail 18 to 20% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 160 - 184, subcaudals 51 - 66. The basic color grey or yellow brown, with three longitudinal dark stripes. The belly white or yellow (see pictures above).
Midbody scale-rows l7; ventrals 167; anal divided; subcaudals 57; labials 8, the fourth and fifth entering the orbit [LOVERIDGE].
Specimens from FMNH: Midbody scale-rows 17; ventrals 167-183; anal divided; subcaudals 54-63; labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit except in the Voi snake where there are 9 with fifth and sixth entering, and the right side of a Molo snake where there are 9 with fourth, fifth, and sixth entering the orbit. The Allata snake is the largest example of this race which I have ever seen, surpassing by over 150 mm. the biggest in a series of thirty-five of the typical race which I collected in 1930; it measures 1,159+ (995+164 + tip of tail which is missing) mm [LOVERIDGE]. Ethiopian localities Allata (Osgood) and Webi Shebelli (Osgood).

Distribution:
Ethiopia, Kenya, N Tanzania, with a relict population in N Rwanda; Central Ethiopia in higher altitudes on both sides of the Rift Valley.

Biology:
Diurnal, terrestrial snake. They hunt lizards and frogs, but also small mammals or snakes. The females lays 4-16 eggs.

Note:
Some of herpetologists consider it to be a subspecies Psammophylax variabilis multisquamis.

Description original:
Loveridge,A. 1932. New opisthoglyphous snakes of the genera Crotaphopeltis and Trimerorhinus from Angola and Kenya Colony. Proc. Biol. Soc. Washington 45: 83-86

Psammophylax variabilis GÜNTHER, 1893
Günther,A. Report on a collection of reptiles and batrachians transmitted by Mr. H. H. Johnston, C. B., from Nyassaland. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1892: 555-558

Our records:
Neghelle Borana (Trailin, Novak)

Psammophylax multisquamis - Habitat, 30 km east from Neghelle Borana, Sidama keflehager, Ethiopia


Prosymna greigerti MOCQUARD, 1906

A small snake, length not more up to 40 cm. Tail 10 - 16% of the total length. The color brown or black. Dorsal scales have 2 - 3 apikal pits and bright dot. The rostrum sharp and wide. Loreale long and narrow. Preoculare 1 (uncommonly 2), postoculare 1 (2), temporale 1 + 2 (uncommonly 1+1 ; 2+2 nebo 2+3). Supralabialia 5 (4), two and third bordered eye. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals in males 136, ventrals in females 153 - 168, subcaudals paired, 29 - 36 in males and 17 - 23 in females. The females have a significantly shorter tail. Applies to all species of the genus.

Distripution:
In Ethiopia West African herpetofauna element. Western Ethiopia (Gambella).

Biology:
Behavior of this species unknown. It inhabits moist mossaic savanna and forests at lower altitudes. Nocturnal and terrestrial snake, which spent most of life underground, under stones, trunks, in burrows and holes, or inside termite hills. They feed exclusivelly lizards eggs, mostly of geckoes (applies to all species of the genus). Oviparous. The females lays 2 - 4 eggs.

Description original:
Reinhardt, J. T.: Beskrivelse af nogle nye Slangearter. Danske Vidensk. Selsk. Afhandl. 10: 233-279.



Prosymna ruspolii (BOULENGER 1896)


Short description:
Rostral large, much broader than deep, forming a broad suture with the internasal, which is nearly thrice as broad as long; praefrontal longer than the internasal, nearly four times as broad as long; frontal large, longer than its distance from the end of the snout, as long as the parietals; supraocular narrow; loreal twice as long as deep; one prae and one postocular; temporals l + 2; six upper labials, third and fourth entering the eye; three lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields; posterior chin-shields narrower and shorter than the anterior, separated from each other by an elongate shield. Anal entire; Dark brown or grey above, each scale with a light terminal dot; upper lip and lower parts white. Total length up to 25 mm. The tail short, 10-16% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 17 (15 o.d), ventrals 145 - 152 (135 o.d) in males and 163 - 170 in females, subcaudals 32 - 36 in males and 23 - 26 in females. There is typical sharp and wide rostrum.

Distribution:
S Ethiopia, S Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania. Southern Ethiopia (Dolo Odo, Abaya Lake, Filtu).

Biology:
As previous species. Poorly known nocturnal snake. The females lays small number of eggs (3-4) in size 28 x 7 mm.

Description original:
Boulenger,G.A.: A list of the reptiles and batrachians collected by the late Prince Eugenio Ruspoli in Somaliland and Gallaland in 1893. Annali Mus. civ. Stor. nat. Genova, Giacomo Doria, (2) 17: 5-14 [11]

Our records:
Filtu (Trailin, Novák)- at night after rain.

Common english name: Ruspoli's Shovelsnout Snake

Prosymna ruspolii - Habitat, Filtu, Sidama keflehager, Ethiopia


Prosymna somalica PARKER 1930


Short description:
A small snake, maximum length up to 40 cm. Dorsal scales smooth. The color dark grey, the belly paler. Ventrals in males 116 - 125, ventrals in females 131 - 143, subcaudals in males 30 - 38, 22 - 29 in females.

Distribution:
Known only from the eastern border areas of Ethiopia and Somalia (Burao, Borama, Haud).

Biology:
Natural history of this species completely unknown. Probably like other species of the genus. They feed reptile eggs. Oviparous.

Description original:
Parker,H.W. Three new Reptiles from Somaliland. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (10) 6: 603-606

Common english name: Northern Somali Shovelsnout Snake



Rhamphiophis rostratus - oxyrhynchus


Short description:
A large snake, maximal length up to 160 cm. The body is relatively strong and muscular, the head short, beveled with big rostrum. The eyes big, pupil rounded, the iris goldish or redish. The tongue pinkish with white tip. The tail 27 to 32% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 170 - 196 (R.o.rostratus 148 - 190), subcaudals 88 - 106 paired (R.o.rostratus 90 - 125), anal scute divided. The color variable. Dosrsom brown, gray or gray-brown, yellow-brown. Reticulated pattern and lighter dots on each dorsal scales in Rhamphiophis rostratus, Red-brown dorsum and brown dots on each dorsal scales in Rhamphiophis oxyrhynchus. The belly white or yellowish, the throat yellow.
Specimen from FMNH: Midbody scale-rows 17; ventrals 171; anal divided; subcaudals 115; labials 8, fourth and fifth entering the orbit; preoculars not in contact with the frontal; posterior chin-shields longer than the anterior. Total length 897 (611+286) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Republic of South Africa, E Africa from S Sudan and Ethiopia to Mozambique, through Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, SE Zaire, Zimbabwe, Zambia. In Ethiopia, from west to east through central Ethiopia. Missing on high altitudes.
Rhamphiophis oxyrhynchus oxyrhynchus (REINHARDT, 1843) lowlands and middle altitudes in the southwest and on Ethiopian Highlands in west (Gambella).
Rhamphiophis oxyrhynchus rostratus PETERS, 1854 Southern Ethiopia, Omo valley, Rift Valley, Ogaden north to Dire Dawa. Nowaday considered as a valid species

Biology:
Moist savanna and edges of forests up to 2,000 m asl. (R.o.oxyrhynchus), dry semi-arid scrubland and wooded savannah (R.o.rostratus). Diurnal snake. They hunt lizards, frogs, small mammals, birds, which finds by excellent eyesight. During the hunt puts up his head for a better view.
Females lays about 20 eggs in size 35 x 20 mm.

Description:
Reinhardt, J. T. Beskrivelse af nogle nye Slangearter. Danske Vidensk. Selsk. Afhandl. 10: 233-279.
Peters,W.C.H. 1854. Diagnosen neuer Batrachier, welche zusammen mit der früher (24. Juli und 17. August) gegebenen Übersicht der Schlangen und Eidechsen mitgetheilt werden. Ber. Bekanntmach. Geeignet. Verhandl. Königl.-Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1854: 614-628

Common english name: Rufous Beaked Snake

Rhamphiophis rostratus - Habitat, Near Omorate, Omo area, Gamo Gofa keflehager, Ethiopia


Rhamphiophis rubropunctatus (FISCHER 1884)


Short description:
A large snake, maximal length up to 250 cm, on average 150 - 200 cm. The basic color light brown or brown-grey, the head orange. The eyes big, pupil rounded. The tail 30% of the total length. Dorsal scales smooth. The juveniles and subadults lighter, with scattered red-brown dots on dorsum. The spots is sometimes even in adults, although a paler. Midbody scale rows 19, ventrals 207 - 245, subcaudals 130 - 160 and paired, anal scute divided.

Distribution:
S Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, E Kenya, Uganda, N Tanzania. In Ethiopia west (Gambella), south and east (Omo valley, Awash NP, Negelle Borana, Haud - Ogaden).

Biology:
A dry scrubland and wooded savannah at altitudes up to 1200 m asl. Diurnal species. They feed lizards, mammals, birds...etc. Oviparous. Popular terrarium snake.

Description:
Fischer, J. G. Über einige afrikanische Reptilien, Amphibien und Fische des Naturhistorischen Museums I. Über die von Herrn Dr. G.A. Fischer in Massai Gebiete (Ost Afrika) auf seiner in Veranlassung der geographischen Gesellschaft in Hamburg unternommenen Expedition gesammelten Reptilien, Amphibien und Fische. Jahrb. Hamburg Wiss. Anst. 1: 1-32

Common english name: Red Beaked Snake

Rhamphiophis rubropunctatus - Habitat, Near Woyto, Gamo Gofa keflehager, Ethiopia


Scaphiophis albopunctatus PETERS 1870

Short description:
The upper surface of the rostral once and a half to twice as long as its distance from the frontal; internasals and praefrontals broad, the former as long as or a little shorter than the latter; frontal a little longer than broad, nearly twice as broad as the supraocular; parietals broken up into four shields or more; usually two small superposed loreals; one prae and two postoculars; three suboculars, separating the eye from the labials; temporals small, scale-like; five upper labials, fifth very long; a single pair of large chin-shields, in contact with three lower labials on each side. Scales in 25 to 31 rows on the neck, 21 to 25 on the middle of the body. Ventrals 210-240; anal divided; subcaudals 51-65. Pale brown above, uniform or spotted with black, or with whitish dots; lower parts white [BOULENGER].
A large snake, maximal length about 160 cm. Large broad and sharp rostrum. The eyes small, pupil rounded, iris golden. The tongue black. The tail 14 to 18% of the total length. The upper jaw significantly exceeds the the lower jaw. Midbody scale rows 19 - 25, ventrals 170 - 201 in males, 189 - 221 in females, subcaudals 49 - 76. The dorsal scales 1.5 times longer than broad (in S.raffreyi 2 x longer than broad. The basic color grey, grey-pinkish or red-brown, the bally orange or pinkish.

Distribution:
Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, S Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Cameroon, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Ethiopia. In Ethiopia southwest (Akobo).

Biology:
It inhabit variety of habitats at elevation of about 500 - 1500 m asl. Mostly dry and moist savanna, acacia woodland and grassland. They hunt lizards, mammals, birds ....etc. Oviparous.

Description original:
Peters,W.C.H.: Eine Mitteilung über neue Amphibien (Hemidactylus, Urosaura, Tropidolepisma, Geophis, Uriechis, Scaphiophis, Hoplocephlaus, Rana, Entomogossus, Cystignathus, Hylodes, Arthroleptis, Phyllobates, Cophomantis) des Königlich-zoologischen Museums. Monatsber. Akad. Wiss. Berlin 1870: 641-652

Common english name: African Shovel-nosed Snake



Scaphiophis raffreyi BOCOURT 1875

Short description:
A medium sized snake, length up to 150 cm. The tail 15 to 20% of the total length. The eyes small, pupil rounded, tongue black. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 27 - 31, ventrals 204 - 216 in males, 225 - 243 in females. Subcaudals 55 - 68 in females, 72 - 79 in males. The rostral shield big, broad and sharp. Overlaps the lower jaw. The basic color brown, red-brown, gray or grey-brown, dorsum of juveniles and subadults speckled.

Distribution:
E Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia to NE Uganda and probably NW Kenya. Locally throughout the Ethiopia, north to Eritrea.

Biology:
It inhabit variety of habitats at elevation of about 500 - 2500 m asl. Mostly dry and moist savanna, acacia woodland and grassland. They hunt lizards, frogs, mammals, birds ....etc.
The females lays eggs.

Description original:
Bocourt,M.F.: Ann. Sci. nat. Zool. (6) 2: art. 3

Common english name: Ethiopian hook-nosed snake



Rhagerhis moilensis (REUSS, 1834)
syn.Malpolon moilensis


Short description:
A large snake. Adults are usually 0.80 - 1.40 m in length, but some specimens have reached about 1.9 m. Body is elongated and cylindrical. Eyes are relatively large with rounded pupils. Head is elongated and is distinct from the neck. It generally has a straw coloured background checkered with brownish spots running along the body. The belly surface is usually creme. Midbody scale rows 17, ventrals 139 - 176, 48 - 73 paired subcaudals.

Distribution:
Morocco, Western Sahara, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Israel, Sinai, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, SW Iran, Saudi Arabia, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Mauritania, Niger, Mali, Sudan, Eritrea. In our sphere of interest Eritrea (coastal and north).

Biology:
It inhabits semi-arid or arid habitats, sparsely covered by vegetation. Typical saharan element in east African herpetofauna, although marginally. Diurnal. Fast and agile snake with excellent eyesight. He hunt actively lizards, small rodents or birds. Females lays about 20 eggs into deep holes. Middle venomous snake. Rear fanged. The venom may not be deadly, but if the fangs do get hold of bare flesh and venom is injected, the pain can be excruciating; causing swelling and potentially other complications.

Description original:
Reuss, A. 1834. Zoologische Miscellen. Reptilien, Ophidier. Mus. Senckenbergiana, Frankfurt/M., 1: 129-162.

Common english name: Moila Snake



Telescopus obtusus (REUSS, 1834)


Short description:
A medium-sized, rather slender snake. The total length of 190 cm, but usually less, about 100 cm. The color variable, red-brown or gray. 9 supralabials, third, fourth, and fifth enter the eye. The tongue pink. The head broad, distinct from the neck. The body on the cross section triangular. The tail 15-20% of the total length. The dorsal scales smooth. Midbody scale rows 19-25, ventrals 205-278, subcaudals paired 57-97.
In Egypt, Sudan and Eritrea with 21-23 scale rows, constantly two anals, three labials entering the eye and a high ventral count, 230-278. type locality : Egypt.
The population of southern Somaliland and adjacent Kenya differs from that of the central area, in the occasional reduction of the mid-body scale rows to 19, the frequent (62 %) presence of an undivided anal and a lower number of ventral shields, 205-244 vice 230-278. There is no geographical or morphological discontinuity between the southern Somaliland population and obtusus and the population of northern Somaliland is intermediate in regard to the frequency of occurrence of the undivided anal and a slightly higher ventral count [according to PARKER].

Distribution:
Oman, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunesia, Libyia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Uganda, Central African Republic, Chad, Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso, N Kenya. In Ethiopia Rift Valley, Ogaden, eastward Harar and Dire Dawa, to north Tekeze, Tigray and Eritrea, including Red Sea islands.

Biology:
It inhabits semi-arid areas from 0 - 1800 m asl. Nocturnal, semiarboreal snake. The females lays 5-20 eggs in size 25 x 10 mm. They feed a wide variety of prey. Lizards (gekoes, chameleons...), birds, rodents or bats.

Description original:
Reuss, A. 1834. Zoologische Miscellen. Reptilien, Ophidier. [Coluber albiventris, Echis pavo]. Mus. Senckenbergiana, Frankfurt/M., 1: 129-162

Our records: Near Bedelle (Trailin, Neèas, Lizler); Metahara (Novak, Mazuch); Dessei island, Eritrea (Mazuch, Novak) Somaliland (Mazuch);

Common english name: Egyptian Catsnake

Telescopus obtusus - Habitat, Metahara, Shewa keflehager, Ethiopia


Telescopus pulcher (SCORTECCI 1935)


Short description:
A small snake reaching sizes 450 mm. However, we can be assumed also larger size, because this species is known only from two preserved specimens. Midbody scale rows = 17 - 18, Ventrals = 174 - 180, Subcaudals = 56 - 57 and paired. The basic color is pale pink or cream, on the back and tail numerous (cca 40) red-brown blotches. The eyes big, iris yellow. Black pattern on the head. The underside white or cream.
There are ten anterior maxillary teeth, gradually decreasing in size, followed by a pair of grooved fangs, a dental system not differing in any essential from that of Telescopus. In addition, the paratype has 18 scale rows at mid-body and the presence of an even number is, as may be seen from the list of specimens of T. dhara, above, a common one in this genus [according to PARKER].

Distribution:
Somalia, Ethiopia. It lives in northern Somalia (44°44'E x 8°45'N) and adjacent parts of Ethiopia. One of the localities is situated on the border between Somalia and Ethiopia (Ogaden).

Biology:
It Inhabits semi-arid, sand-stone areas, sparsely covered by xerophytic plants at altitudes about 1100 m asl. Almost unknown snake.

Description original:
Scortecci,G. Un nuovo genere e una nuova specie di Colubridi Opisoglifi della penisola dei Somali. Annali Mus. civ. Stor. nat. Giacomo Doria 59: 1-5

Common english name: Beautiful Cat Snake
Described as Migiurtinophis pulcher
























































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