Magliophis Zaher et al., 2009

Hedges, Blair, Couloux, Arnaud & Vidal, Nicolas, 2009, Molecular phylogeny, classification, and biogeography of West Indian racer snakes of the Tribe Alsophiini (Squamata, Dipsadidae, Xenodontinae), Zootaxa 2067, pp. 1-28: 19

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Magliophis Zaher et al., 2009


Genus Magliophis Zaher et al., 2009 

Type species. Dromicus exiguus Cope, 1862  [1863]: 79.

Diagnosis. Species in this genus have 19 midbody scale rows, 137–165 ventrals, 71–102 subcaudals, no apical scale pits, eight upper labials, and nine lower labials ( Table 2). Magliophis  differs from each of the other alsophiine genera in at least one of those characters.

Content. Two species (three species + subspecies) are included in the genus ( Table 1).

Distribution. Species of Magliophis  are distributed throughout the Puerto Rican Bank ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2).

Remarks. Species of Magliophis  ( Fig. 3View FIGURE 3 F) are small racers (438 mm, maximum snout-vent length, SVL) that occur sympatrically with the larger racers of the Genus Borikenophis  on the Puerto Rican Bank. The two included species were previously placed in the Genus Arrhyton  . The phylogenetic trees ( Figs. 1View FIGURE 1. A and 4View FIGURE 4. A) show that Magliophis stahli  is quite divergent from M. exiguus  , which agrees with morphology ( Schwartz 1967) and supports its recognition as a distinct species rather than subspecies. Zaher et al. (2009) described this genus based on hemipenial characters in the species M. exiguus  . Oddly, that species was omitted from their molecular phylogeny even though it was present in the data set of Vidal et al (2000), and corresponding sequences were available in GenBank.