Plumbeous Water Snake ( Hypsiscopus plumbea Boie, 1827 )

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Name
Scientific Name: 
Hypsiscopus plumbea (Boie, 1827)
Regional Names: 
English: 
Rice Paddy Snake
Photographs: 
Distribution: 
In India it is found only in Nicobar Island. Not recorded from Indian mainland. Also found commonly in Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
Family: 
Description: 

Maximum length- 56cm

Dorsal-
Body moderately stout, thick and robust. Covered with smooth scales of rhomboidal shape. Dorsal olive brown, grayish or greenish with blackish-brown margin on the edge of scales. First three dorsal rows uniform yellow in young ones while with grayish-black edge in adults.

Ventral –
Belly yellow-white with series of black dots forming a mid line in belly.

Head –
Head scarcely broader than neck; snout rounded. Top of the head similar to dorsal color. Upper lip color similar to belly. Eyes with vertically elliptical pupil. Nostrils and eyes at the upper level of eyes.

Tail –
Short and thick tail ends with a pointed tip. Color similar to dorsal. Underside similar to rest of belly.

Scalation
Head: 
Rostral broader than high, nasal cleft extends to 1st or 2nd supralabial; internasal 1, not in contact with loreal; supralabial 8, 4th or 4th & 5th in contact with eyes; loreal single, in contact with 2-3 or 2-4 or rarely with 1-3 supralabial; preocular 1, postocular 2, temporal 1+2; 4 or 5 infralabials in contact with anterior chin shields.
Dorsal: 
Smooth scales in 19 mid body rows.
Ventral: 
119-142; anal divided.
Sub Caudal: 
22-45; paired.
Habitat: 
Distributed in wet areas having marshes, pond banks, mudflats, paddy fields. Hides in mudholes, under debris, under aquatic vegetation etc.
Diet: 
Feeds on fish and amphibians, also takes amphibian larvae and egg masses.
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