The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

 ISSN 0268-0130

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pdf 02. A review of the genus Lycophidion (Serpentes Colubridae) in Northeastern Africa


Open Access


Authors: Donald G. Broadley And Barry Hughes

Abstract: Variation in Lycophidion populations of the southern Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, Uganda and Kenya is analysed. Five species occur in this area: L. irroraturn and L. ornaturn are restricted to forests, L. depressirostre and L. taylori sp. nov. inhabit dry savannas, L. capense jacksoni is found in the moister savannas of the highlands and plateau areas, while L. capense loveridgei occurs in both forest and savanna of the coastal strip. L. irroraturn is readily distinguished by the paired apical pits on the dorsal scales. L. depressirostre and L. taylori both have lower ventral and subcaudal counts than the other taxa, but L. depressirostre can be distinguished from all other species by its more numerous maxillary teeth (8 to 9 + 19 to 24 compared with 7 to 8 + 11 to 1 8) and usually one colour pattern. L. taylori is very variable in colouration, but most specimens have a white blotch or collar on the nape and white dorsal stippling may be very extensive. The type series of L. taylori comes from the border between northern Somalia and Ethiopia, but there are isolated specimens from northern Kenya (Turkana District), Chad and Senegal.

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Please note that as from Volume 31 Number 1 (January 2021) on, the Herpetological Journal will be available as an online publication only - the last print edition will be Volume 30 Number 4.   

Aligning with this change, it is now no longer possible to purchase a subscription that includes a print copy of the HJ.  All members who have existing HJ print subscriptions that remain active as at end June 2020 will receive the full four 2020 print editions.  New subscribers or renewals after this time will only have option to subscribe to the online only subscription package.  Subscription pricing has been amended to reflect the content changes.