Species of Thailand
Thai: งูลายสอใหญ่, ngu lai sor yai
Binomial name: Xenochrophis piscator, Johann Gottlob Theaenus Schneider, 1799
The checkered keelback or Asiatic water snake (Xenochrophis piscator) is a common species of nonvenomous snake found in Asia.
This snake's eyes are rather small, and shorter than its distance from the nostril in the adult. Its rostral scale is visible from above. The internasal scales are much narrowed anteriorly and subtriangular, with the anterior angle truncated and as long as the prefrontal scales. The frontal scale is longer than its distance from the end of the snout, and as long as the parietals or a little shorter. The loreal is nearly as long as it is deep. There is one preocular and three (rarely four) post-oculars. Its temporals are 2+2 or 2+3. There are normally nine upper labials, with the fourth and fifth entering the eye and five lower labials in contact with the anterior chin-shields, which are shorter than the posterior. Scales are arranged in 19 rows, strongly keeled, with outer rows smooth. Ventrals are at 125–158, anal divided, with subcaudals at 64–90. Coloration is very variable, consisting of dark spots arranged quincuncially and often separated by a whitish network, or of black longitudinal bands on a pale ground, or of dark cross bands, with or without whitish spots. Two oblique black streaks, one below and the other behind the eye, are nearly constant, lower parts white, with or without black margins to the shields.
A rare case of autotomy is reported from Vietnam.
This snake is found in or near freshwater lakes or rivers. It feeds mainly on small fish and water frogs.
The species is found in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, West Malaysia, China (Zhejiang, Jiangxi, Fujian, Guangdong, Hainan, Guangxi, Yunnan), Taiwan, and Indonesia (Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Celebes = Sulawesi)
type locality: "East Indies"
- Assamese – ঢোঁৰা সাপ
- Bengali - ঢোঁড়া সাপ
- Odia - ଧଣ୍ଡ ସାପ
- Gujarati – dendu saap
- Hindi – Dendu saap
- Indonesia - Bandotan tutul
- Kannada - ನೀರು ಹಾವು
- Marathi - दिवड
- Malayalam - നീർക്കോലി
- Tamil - கண்டங்கண்டை நீர்க்கோலி (Kandangkandai Neerkoli)
- Telugu - నీరు కట్టు(neeru kattu)
- Dutt, Kalma 1970 Chromosome Variation in Two Populations of Xenochrophis piscator Schn. from North and South India (Serpentes, Colubridae). Cytologia 35: pp. 455–464
- Schneider, J. G., 1799 Historiae Amphibiorum narturalis et literariae. Fasciculus primus, continens Ranas. Calamitas, Bufones, Salamandras et Hydros. Jena, 266 S.
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Videos of Checkered keelback
- Xenochrophis piscator
- Gewöhnliche Fischnatter
- Asiatic water snakes
- Checkered keelback
- งูลายสอใหญ่, ngu lai sor yai
- งูสา, ngu saa
Xenochrophis piscator melanzostus, Johann Ludwig Christian Gravenhorst, 1807
Range: Indonesia (Borneo Java, Sulawesi?, Sumatra), India (Andaman and Nicobar Islands).
Xenochrophis piscator piscator, Johann Gottlob Theaenus Schneider, 1799
Range: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Pakistan, People's Republic of China (including Hainan), Sri Lanka, Taiwan and Thailand.
- Xenochorpis piscator, Fellows (in error) (2015)
- Xenochrophis piscator, Van Stanley Bartholomew Wallach et al. (2014)
- Xenochrophis piscator, T.S.N. Murthy (2010)
- Xenochrophis piscator, Tanya Chan-Ard et al. (1999)
- Xenochrophis piscator, Merel J. Cox et al. (1998)
- Xenochrophis piscator, E. V. Malnate & Sherman Anthony Minton (1965)
- Natrix piscator, Michael Wilmer Forbes Tweedie (1954)
- Natrix piscator, Malcolm Arthur Smith (1943)
- Nerodia (Tropidonotus) piscator, Frank Wall (1921)
- Tropidonotus piscator, Frank Wall (1908)
- Natrix piscator, Leonhard Hess Stejneger (1907)
- Tropidonotus piscator, George Albert Boulenger (1893)
- Tropidonotus quincunciatus, John Anderson (1871)
- Amphiesma flavipunctatum, Edward Hallowell (1861)
- Tropidonotus quincunciatus, Albert Charles Lewis Günther (1859)
- Tropidonotus quincunciatus, André Marie Constant Duméril, Gabriel Bibron & Auguste Duméril (1854)
- Tropidonotus quincunciatus, Hermann Schlegel (1837)
- Col. quincunciatus, Hermann Schlegel (1837)
- Coluber bengalensis, John Edward Gray (1835)
- Natrix piscator, Blasius Merrem (1820)
- Hydrus piscator, Johann Gottlob Theaenus Schneider (1799)
- Bang Khen District, Bangkok
- Doi Inthanon National Park
- Doi Saket District, Chiang Mai
- Hua Hin District, Prachuap Khiri Khan
- Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary
- Kaeng Krachan National Park
- Khao Sok National Park
- Khao Yai National Park
- Ko Chang District, Trat
- Mae Ramat District, Tak
- Mae Sariang District, Mae Hong Son
- Mae Taeng District, Chiang Mai
- Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai
- Pak Thong Chai District, Nakhon Ratchasima
- Pang Sida National Park
- Phu Kradueng National Park
- Phu Luang Wildlife Sanctuary
- Sai Yok District, Kanchanaburi
- Sakaerat Environmental Research Station
- Salawin National Park
- San Sai District, Chiang Mai
- Tha Song Yang District, Tak
- Thung Yai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary
Range map of Xenochrophis piscator in Thailand
Important note; our range maps are based on limited data we have collected. The data is not necessarily accurate or complete.
Special thanks to Ton Smits and Parinya Pawangkhanant for their help with many range data.
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