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SYSTEMATICS OF SNAKES OF THE DIPSAS OREAS COMPLEX



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SYSTEMATICS OF SNAKES OF THE DIPSAS OREAS COMPLEX COLUBRIDAE DIPSADINAE IN WESTERN ECUADOR AND PERU WITH REVALIDATION OF D ELEGANS BOULENGER AND D ELLIPSIFERA BOULENGER JOHN E CADLE1 CONTENTS Abstract Resumen Introduction Methods Localities The R o Zan a Study Site Systematic Characters with Special Reference to Dipsas The Dipsas oreas Complex Resurrection of D elegans and D ellipsifera Dipsas ellipsifera Boulenger Dipsas elegans Boulenger Dipsas oreas Cope Notes on the Holotype Diagnosis Description Hemipenis Geographic Variation in Dipsas oreas and the Identity of Peruvian Specimens Distribution and Type Locality Natural History Habitats Activity Patterns Eggs and Hatchlings Aggregation Behavior in Dipsas oreas Taxonomic and Geographical Notes on Dipsas gracilis D latifasciatus and D latifrontalis Dipsas gracilis Dipsas latifasciatus and D latifrontalis in Eastern Ecuador and Peru Key to Species of Dipsas in Western South America Acknowledgments Specimens Examined and Locality Records Literature Cited 67 68 69 70 70 71 74 77 88 97 98 98 100 108 108 112 116 120 122 123 126 127 129 130 132 1 Department of Herpetology Chicago Zoological Society 3300 Golf Road Brookfield Illinois 60513 Associate Department of Herpetology Museum of Comparative Zoology ABSTRACT The systematics and biology of colubrid snakes from western Ecuador and northern Peru in the Dipsas oreas group comprising the nominal taxa D oreas Cope D elegans Boulenger and D ellipsifera Boulenger are reviewed The last two species are resurrected from the synonymy of D oreas These species especially D elegans and D ellipsifera have been confused in previous literature because of inadequate attention to patterns of sexual dimorphism and geographic variation Dipsas elegans and D ellipsifera share a distinctive color pattern that is quite different from color patterns in D oreas Dipsas ellipsifera differs from both D oreas and D elegans in having lower ventral and subcaudal counts but sexes must be analyzed



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