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Keel-bellied Whip Snake
   
   

Family : COLUBRIDAE
Species : Dryophiops rubescens
Maximum Size : 1 metre

The Keel-bellied Whip Snake Dryophiops rubescens is closely related to typical green or brown whip snakes of the genus Ahaetulla, such as the Oriental Whip Snake.

This diurnal species inhabits lowland forest, including mature secondary forest, and tends to prefer sunnier areas at the forest edge. It is mainly arboreal, but will come to ground to traverse short stretches of open land between forest fragments.

Its diet comprises mainly arboreal lizards and frogs.

The slender body is laterally compressed. The ground colour is grey to ruddy brown, and is adorned with dark brown and cream spots and flecks. The underside is cream mottled with brown flecks in places. There is a thick, dark brown stripe behind each eye, and the tongue is bright red.

The Keel-bellied Whip Snake occurs in southern Thailand, parts of Indochina (Cambodia), Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Sumatra, Borneo, Java and parts of the Philippines.


Figs 1 to 3 : Typical specimen from Singapore's secondary forests.  All photos thanks to Noel Thomas.


References : H10, H12, H14
 

 

Fig 1
 
ゥ  Noel Thomas
 
Fig 2
 
ゥ  Noel Thomas
 
Fig 3
 
ゥ  Noel Thomas