Taxonomic reassessment of the Herpetoreas xenura (Wall, 1907) (Squamata: Serpentes: Natricidae) from Myanmar with description of a new species

  • Tan Van Nguyen Institute for Research and Training in Medicine, Biology and Pharmacy, Duy Tan University, Da Nang, 550000, Vietnam
  • Hmar Tlawmte Lalremsanga Developmental Biology and Herpetology Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Mizoram University, 796004 Tanhril, Mizoram, India
  • Lal Biakzuala Developmental Biology and Herpetology Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Mizoram University, 796004 Tanhril, Mizoram, India
  • Gernot Vogel Society for South East Asian Herpetology, Im Sand-3, Heidelberg, Germany
Keywords: distribution, Herpetoreas davidi sp. nov., Indo-Burmese region, Naga Hills, Rakhine Hills, taxonomy


The review of the taxonomic status of Herpetoreas xenura species complex, based on morphological and molecular data, revealed a new species from Myanmar, which we describe as Herpetoreas davidi sp. nov. from the Rakhine Yoma Elephant Wildlife Sanctuary in Rakhine State. It is suggested to be a sister species to Herpetoreas pealii and Herpetoreas xenura sensu stricto, and can be separated from the latter species by a combination of morphological and scalation characters, and by its pattern. Another population from the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary, Sagaing Region, was previously confused with H. xenura. However, as a closer examination of its morphology, shows it to be closer to Hebius khasiensis, we herein tentatively refer to this population as Hebius khasiensis, pending further molecular data confirming its taxonomic status. Consequently, we propose to temporarily remove Herpetoreas xenura from the fauna of Myanmar. Further studies, especially in the northwestern region of Myanmar, such as near border with India in Chin Hills and Naga Hills, are required. An updated key for the species of Herpetoreas is also provided.


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How to Cite
Nguyen, T. V., Lalremsanga, H. T., Biakzuala, L., & Vogel, G. (2024). Taxonomic reassessment of the Herpetoreas xenura (Wall, 1907) (Squamata: Serpentes: Natricidae) from Myanmar with description of a new species. European Journal of Taxonomy, 932(1), 158–203.
Research article