Snakes of Europe/Species/Eryx jaculus

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Eryx jaculus, known commonly as the Javelin sand boa, is a species of snake in the Boidae family.[1][2] First described by Linnaeus in 1758, it is the type species of the genus Eryx.

Eryx jaculus, the Sand Boa

Geographic range[edit | edit source]

Eryx jaculus is found in eastern and south eastern Europe, the Caucasus, the Middle East, and Africa.

Description[edit | edit source]

The javelin sand boa may grow to 80 cm (31½ inches) in total length. Coloring varies greatly. Dorsally it may be grayish, tan, brownish, or reddish, with darker blotches or bars in an irregular network. It usually has a dark streak from the eye to the corner of the mouth. Ventrally it is whitish or yellowish. It is heavy-bodied and has a short blunt tail. The ventrals are very narrow, less than ⅓ of the width of the body.[3] The rostral is large and broad with an angular horizontal edge. The eye is separated from the labials by one or two rows of small scales. There are 10-14 upper labials. The dorsal scales are in 40-50 rows, smooth anteriorly, but weakly keeled posteriorly. There are 165-200 ventrals, and 15-34 subcaudals.[4]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Template:ITIS
  2. McDiarmid, Roy W., Jonathan A. Campbell, and T'Shaka A. Touré, 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, vol. 1
  3. Arnold, E.N. and J.A. Burton. 1978. A Field Guide to the Reptiles and Amphibians of Britain and Europe. Collins. London. ISBN 0-00-219318-3.
  4. Boulenger, G.A. 1893. Catalogue of the Snakes in the British Museum (Natural History), Volume I. London.