Corallus, the neotropical tree boas,[3] are a genus of boas found in Central America, South America and the West Indies. Nine extant species are recognized as of 2017.[3]

Temporal range: Paleocene to recent
Amazon tree boa, C. hortulanus
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Boidae
Subfamily: Boinae
Genus: Corallus
Daudin, 1803[1]
Type species
Corallus obtusirostris
Daudin, 1803
  • Xiphosoma Wagler, 1824
  • Chrysenis Gray, 1860
  • Xenoboa Hoge, 1953

Description edit

All members of this genus are long, slightly flattened laterally and have thin bodies with large heads. They typically have relatively large eyes, although this is less pronounced in the larger species, such as the emerald tree boa, Corallus caninus. The anterior teeth are highly elongated, often being several times the length one would expect for snakes of their size. These are used for penetrating layers of feathers to get a firm grip on birds, their primary prey. All members of the genus are nocturnal and have large numbers of very pronounced thermoreceptive pits are located between the labial scales.

Distribution and habitat edit

Species in the genus Corallus are found in Central America, South America and the West Indies. In Central America they occur in Honduras, eastern Guatemala through Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. The range of the genus in South America includes Pacific Colombia and Ecuador, as well as the Amazon Basin from Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and northern Bolivia through Brazil to Venezuela, Isla Margarita, Trinidad, Tobago, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana. In the West Indies it is found on St. Vincent, the Grenadines (Bequia Island, Ile Quatre, Baliceaux, Mustique, Canouan, Maryeau, Union Island, Petit Martinique and Carriacou), Grenada and the Windward Islands (Lesser Antilles).[2]

Species edit

As of 2017, nine species are recognized in this genus.[4][3] C. annulatus was formerly treated as a subspecies of C. annulatus but is now treated as a species in its own right.[5]

Species[3] Taxon author[3] Subsp.*[3] Common name Geographic range[2] Image
C. annulatus (Cope, 1875) 0 Ringed tree boa Central America in eastern Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama. Also in South America in Pacific Colombia and northwestern Ecuador.
C. batesii (Gray, 1860) 0 Amazon Basin emerald tree boa South America in the Amazon Basin region of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, northern Bolivia, and Brazil.
C. blombergi (Rendahl [sv] and Vestergren, 1941) 0 Blomberg’s tree boa Ecuador, Colombia (Nariño)
C. caninus (Linnaeus, 1758) 0 Emerald tree boa South America in the Guiana Shield region of Colombia, and from Venezuela to the Guianas.
C. cookii (Gray, 1842) 0 Cook's tree boa St. Vincent (West Indies).
C. cropanii (Hoge, 1953) 0 Cropani's tree boa Miracatu, São Paulo, Brazil.
C. grenadensis (Barbour, 1914) 0 Grenada Bank tree boa The Grenadines: Bequia Island, Ile Quatre, Baliceaux, Mustique, Canouan, Maryeau, Union Island and Carriacou and Grenada.
C. hortulanaT (Linnaeus, 1758) 0 Amazon tree boa South America in southern Colombia east of the Andes, southern Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Amazonian Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia.
C. ruschenbergerii (Cope, 1876) 0 Central American tree boa Lower Central America in southwestern Costa Rica (south of 10° N) and Panama, including Isla del Rey, Isla Contadora, Isla de Cébaco and Isla Suscantupu. South America in Colombia east of the Andes, north of the Cordillera Central and north of the Cordillera Oriental, northern Venezuela north of the Cordillera de Mérida and in the drainage of the Río Orinoco, north and west of the Guiana Shield, east of the Orinoco Delta. Also on Isla Margarita, Trinidad and Tobago.

T) Type species.

Captivity edit

Two species of Corallus are frequently imported as pets, the Amazon tree boa, C. hortulanus, and the emerald tree boa, C. caninus. Most, if not all, have an aggressive demeanor and will strike readily. Their stunning coloration makes them popular, but their specialized habitat and feeding make them suitable only for advanced keepers. Captive bred specimens are much more docile than their wild caught counterparts.

Extinct species edit

A fossil species, Corallus priscus, was described in Brazil in 2001.[6][7]

References edit

  1. ^ Daudin, F. M. (1803). "Erpétologie. Caracteres des vingt-trois genres qui composent l'ordre des Ophidiens". Magasin Encyclopédique. An. 8 (in French). 5 (20): 434.
  2. ^ a b c McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T (1999). Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, Volume 1. Washington, District of Columbia: Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Corallus". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 14 September 2017.
  4. ^ Pyron, R. Alexander; Reynolds, R. Graham; Burbrink, Frank T. (2014). "A Taxonomic Revision of Boas (Serpentes: Boidae)". Zootaxa. 3846 (2): 251–252. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3846.2.5. PMID 25112250.
  5. ^ Henderson, Robert W.; Höggren, Mats; Lamar, William W.; Porras, Louis (2001). "Distribution and Variation in the Treeboa Corallus annulatus (Serpentes: Boidae)". Studies on Neotropical Fauna and Environment. 36 (1): 39–47. doi:10.1076/snfe. S2CID 86358805.
  6. ^ Albino, Adriana María; Brizuela, Santiago (2014-03-01). "An Overview of the South American Fossil Squamates". The Anatomical Record. 297 (3): 349–368. doi:10.1002/ar.22858. hdl:11336/25228. ISSN 1932-8494. PMID 24482358. S2CID 38301429.
  7. ^ Rage, Jean-Claude (2001). "Fossil snakes from the Palaeocene of Sao José de Itaborai, Brazil, Part II. Boidae". Paleovertebrata. 30 (3–4): 122–125.

External links edit