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The head large, less depressed than in the preceding species, the muzzle broad, blunt; cheeks tumid ; all the shields of the crown are short and broad, except the vertical which is laterally arched, and very narrow behind. There is a single elongated post-occipital, and the rest of the hind head is covered with broad hexagonal shields. Each temple is covered by two pairs of large shields, in front of which a pair of very minute ones, bordering upon the equally small post-orbitals. The eye is large, prominent ; the præ-orbital and the linear frenal proportionally small; the nostrils large, opening in the middle of the nasal ; the rostral broad, slightly arched beneath. The labials, 9 on each side of both jaws, resemble those of the preceding species. The mouth is large; the maxillary teeth strong, distant. In the lower jaw the anterior ones gradually increase in length till the fourth, which appears like a canine, the rest as well as the palatal teeth are all smaller, of uniform length. The chin is covered by the second pair of labials and two pairs of mentals, of which the posterior pair is elongated. The trunk is strong, less compressed than in the preceding species, with 13 series of smooth imbricate scales, of which the two lowest series are large rhombic with rounded points, the next four elongated rhom. boidal (linear), and the odd central dorsal rhomboidal, not larger than the rest. The tail is covered with broad hexagonal, not imbricate, scales. The abdomen is narrow, flattened ; the centre part of the scuta with strongly arched margins; the sides turned upwards and forming a continued sharp lateral ridge. The tail is slender, tapering ; its vertical section nearly square.
Of this species but two individuals were observed: a young one at Singapore, an adult on the Great Hill of Pinang. The latter measured :
Length of the head,
O ft. 1 inch.
4 ft. 9 inch,
Circumference of the neck, 2, of the trunk 3g, of the root of the tail, l} inch. In its mixed arborial and terrestrial habits and in fierceness it re
sembles L. pictus, but its power of compressing and expanding the forepart of the body is somewhat limited.
This species appears somewhat to approach to Leptophis formosus, (Dendrophis formosa, Schlegel) but besides other distinguishing characters, it differs from that, and all other Asiatic species in having but 13 series of scales. The indifferent figure of Ahætula caudolineata in Illustrations of Indian Zoology, which appears to be all which has been published concerning this species, has led M. Schlegel to suppose it was intended to represent a Variety of Leptophis pictus, although the black outline of the head is correct.
LEPTOPHIS ORNATUS, (Shaw.)
Seba, I. T. 94, Fig. 7.-11. T. 7, Fig. 1; T. 61, Fig. 2.
Dendrophis ornata, Schlegel.
VaR. Syn.-Ular Chindi, Raffles.
Dendrophis chrysochloros, Reinwardt, (young.) Head above intense velvety black, with three or four distant transversal bands, and numerous irregular spots of gamboge or sulphur colour ; all the scales with an oval gamboge spot ; from the hind head to the point of the tail a number of large rounded vermilion spots ; lips, throat and abdominal surface greenish-gamboge, scuta and scutel. la with biack margins. Iris and tongue black.
Scuta 198 to 236. Scutella 113 to 147.
Young. Head, trunk and tail above greenish olive, with a series of transversal black bands in pairs ; the intervals between the bands vermilion ; the sides with numerous distant, irregular, small black spots ; lateral part of the scuta and scutella white, the ridge and the anterior margin black; the centre part pale greenish yellow; scutella partially edged with black, and with a central light blue line. Tongue vermilion, the forked part black. HABIT.- Pinang, Malayan Peninsula.
Java, Sumatra, Tenasserim, Arracan.
The Variety, in which the black colour prevails, appears to be confined to the more southern countries, while that with yellow ground colour preponderating, the one described and figured by Russell, occurs in Bengal. The latter has the tongue alternately vermilion and black. Individuals without the frenal shield are not uncommon, and such was the one described by H. Boie as a distinct species (Chrysopelea paradisi.) It inhabits the Valayan hills and valleys, but is there apparently less numerous than in Bengal. The largest male observed was of the following dimensions : Length of the head,
3 ft. 83 inch. Circumference of the neck, 15, of the trunk, 13, of the root of the tail, inch.
The trunk is covered by 17 longitudinal series of smooth, imbricate rhomboidal scales, with rounded points. It is but seldom seen in trees ; it is more frequently found on the ground in the grass, watching for its prey : lizards (Geckonidæ, *) and frogs. The female has 6 to 8 white, elongated cylindrical eggs, about 1į inch in length. It differs from the other species in its being deprived of the power of compressing, and expanding the anterior part of the body, and in its gentleness. The young ones never attempt to bite, the adult but seldom, and without raising vertically the anterior part of the body. In the latter the four anterior teeth of the lower jaw are a little longer than the rest, which are uniformly small.
Head oblong ovate, rather indistinct, depressed; nostrils between the sutures of two shields ; eyes moderate, with circular pupil, scales of the back lanceolate ovate, keeled, imbricate ; 'trunk elongated, cylindrical, tail moderately long, tapering.
* Vide Ptychosoon homulocephalum, supra.
TROPIDONOTUS UMBRATUS, (Daudin,) Var. SYN.- Tropidonotus trianguligerus, Schlegel.
Above shining brownish, or yellowish green olive; lips gamboge with a black oblique line between the sixth and seventh labials, a second from the orbit to the angle of the mouth ; a third from the under lip to the upper part of the neck; trunk and tail with numerous black spots, in some very minute, irregular, in others larger, approaching to quincunx order ; the sides with numbers of large square or triangular scarlet spots, separated from each other by broader or narrower black vertical bands. Scuta and Scutella gamboge with black margins, the latter with a black central line. Iris black with golden circle ; tongue black.
Scuta 121 to 130, Scutella 76 to 81.
IIabit.-Malayan Peninsula and Islands.
Java, Bengal. The vertical and supra-orbital shields are of an elongated narrow form ; the anterior frontals triangular, longer than broad; the nostrils small, placed high on the sides, the frenal is elongated pentagonal, with the largest margin touching the præ-orbital. Of the three post-orbitals the lowest is the longest, wedged in between the fifth, sixth, and seventh upper labials, of which the fifth is the only one which reaches the orbit; the eye is moderate, prominent; the upper labials are 9, the lower 11 on each side. The mouth is very large, the teeth small, crowded, except the two last of the upper jaw, which are longer than the rest. The trunk is slightly compressed, covered by 19 longitudinal series of scales, of which the two lowest are broad rhombic, the rest clongated rhomboidal with rounded points, those of the back lineated. The abdomen is broad arched. This Variety differs in nothing but colours from Tropidonotus umbratus,* (Daudin), and to judge by the description of M. Schlegel, it appears to be identical with T. trianguligerus. In the Malayan valleys the Variety is very numerous ; in Bengal it is less so, but there the species abounds in and near fresh water, where it preys upon fishes and frogs. The Variety attains to a
* Syn. Russell, II. Pl. 3. Dooblce, young.–Pl. 5. Dora, adult.-Col. umbratus, Daudin.-Col. dora, Daud.-Col. brunneus, Herrman.-Col. utratus, Herrm.- Col. lugubris, Merrem.- Tropidonotus umbratus, Schlegel.—Tropidonotus dora, apud Cantor.
size similar to that of the species, both of which are equally fierce.
O ft. 1 inch.
2 ft. 83 inch. Circumference of the neck, 2, of the trunk, 25, of the root of the tail, 1 inch.
TROPIDONOTUS STOLATUS, (Limé.)
Coluber stolatus, Linné.
Tropidonotus stolatus, Gray, Schlegel. Head shining brownish olive with several black spots in the sutures of the shields : lips gamboge with several black oblique streaks; head and trunk brownish olive with numerous distant black transversal bands, becoming indistinct towards the tail, and intersected by two parallel bands of a pale ochre or buff, the scales of which on the anterior part of the body edged with black. Beneath gamboge or mother-ofpearl ; in some the scuta with a small lateral black spot, or edged with black. Iris black with a narrow golden ring; tongue black.
Scuta 143 to 156, Scutella 69 to 79. Habit.--Pinang, Malayan Peninsula.
Philippines, Tenasserim, Bengal, Assam, Nipal, Coromandel,
Ceylon, Bombay. This species, so exceedingly numerous in Bengal, is but rarely seen in the Malayan valleys. It is of very gentle habits, and feeds upon young frogs and toads. The largest male observed was of the following dimensions : Length of the head, :
O ft. 03 inch.
I st. 10% inch.