Protobothrops elegans

Protobothrops elegans is a venomous pitviper species endemic to Japan in the southern Ryukyu Islands. No subspecies are currently recognized.[2] Common names include: elegant pitviper,[3] Sakishima habu (サキシマハブ),[4] and elegant tree viper.[5]

Protobothrops elegans
Protobothrops elegans
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Genus: Protobothrops
P. elegans
Binomial name
Protobothrops elegans
(Gray, 1849)
  • Craspedocephalus elegans
    Gray, 1849
  • Trimeresurus luteus
    Boettger, 1895
  • Lachesis luteus Boulenger, 1896
  • Lachesis lutea – Boettger, 1898
  • Trimeresurus elegans
    Stejneger, 1907
  • Trimeresurus mucrosq[uamatus]. elegans – Mell, 1929
  • Protobothrops elegans
    – Kraus, Mink & Brown, 1996[1]


Scalation includes 25 (sometimes 23) rows of dorsal scales at midbody, 179-192 (males) or 182-196 (females) ventral scales, 63-90 subcaudal scales, and 8 (sometimes 7 or 9) supralabial scales.[3]

During 1965-2011, 2447 snakebites from this snake are reported with one fatality.[6]

Geographic range

It is found in Japan in the southern Ryukyu Islands. The type locality is unknown. Boulenger listed it as "---- ?" while Gray's original 1849 description gives "West Coast of [North?] America." A restriction to "Ishigaki-Shima [Ryukyu Islands, Japan]" was proposed by Stejneger (1907).[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, Volume 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. ^ "Trimeresurus elegans". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 25 July 2008.
  3. ^ a b Gumprecht A, Tillack F, Orlov NL, Captain A, Ryabov S. 2004. Asian Pitvipers. GeitjeBooks. Berlin. 1st Edition. 368 pp. ISBN 3-937975-00-4.
  4. ^ Mehrtens JM. 1987. Living Snakes of the World in Color. New York: Sterling Publishers. 480 pp. ISBN 0-8069-6460-X.
  5. ^ Brown JH. 1973. Toxicology and Pharmacology of Venoms from Poisonous Snakes. Springfield, Illinois: Charles C. Thomas. 184 pp. LCCCN 73-229. ISBN 0-398-02808-7.
  6. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-02. Retrieved 2013-03-11.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) 沖縄県における平成23 年の毒蛇咬症 沖縄県衛生環境研究所

Further reading

  • Gray, J.E. 1849. Catalogue of the Specimens of Snakes in the Collection of the British Museum. Trustees of the British Museum. London. xv + 125 pp. (Craspedocephalus elegans, p. 7.)

External links


Habu (波布) is a Japanese name used to refer to certain venomous snakes:

The following species are found in the Ryukyu Islands of Japan:

Protobothrops elegans, a.k.a. the Sakishima habu, found in the southern Ryukyu Islands

Protobothrops flavoviridis, a.k.a. the Okinawan habu, found in the southern Ryukyu Islands

Protobothrops tokarensis, a.k.a. the Tokara habu, found in the Tokara Islands

Ovophis okinavensis, a.k.a. the Hime habu

Habu is a name also used for several other species:

Trimeresurus gracilis, a.k.a. the Kikushi habu, found in Taiwan.

Protobothrops mucrosquamatus, a.k.a. the Taiwan habu or Chinese habu, found in Southeast Asia.

Ovophis monticola, a.k.a. the Arisan habu, found in Southeast Asia.

Habu is a nickname given to the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird strategic reconnaissance aircraft of the United States Air Force.

List of crotaline species and subspecies

This is a list of all sure genera, species and subspecies of the subfamily Crotalinae, otherwise referred to as crotalines, pit vipers or pitvipers. It follows the taxonomy currently provided by ITIS, which is based on the continuing work of Dr. Roy McDiarmid.

List of introduced species

A complete list of introduced species for even quite small areas of the world would be dauntingly long. Humans have introduced more different species to new environments than any single document can hope to record. This list is generally for established species with truly wild populations— not kept domestically—that have been seen numerous times, and have breeding populations. While most introduced species can cause a negative impact to new environments they reach, some can have a positive impact, just for conservation purpose.

List of invasive species in Asia

This is a list of invasive species in Asia. A species is regarded as invasive if it has been introduced by human action to a location, area, or region where it did not previously occur naturally (i.e., is not a native species), becomes capable of establishing a breeding population in the new location without further intervention by humans, and becomes a pest in the new location, directly threatening agriculture and/or the local biodiversity.

The term invasive species refers to a subset of those species defined as introduced species. If a species has been introduced but remains local, and is not problematic to agriculture or to the local biodiversity, then it cannot be considered to be an invasive species and does not belong on this list.

List of invasive species in Japan

A number of introduced species, some of which have become invasive species, have been added to Japan's native flora and fauna.

Okinawa habu

Okinawa habu may refer to:

Protobothrops elegans or Trimeresurus elegans, a.k.a. the elegant pitviper or Sakishima habu, a venomous snake found in the southern Ryukyu Islands of Japan.

Protobothrops flavoviridis or Trimeresurus flavoviridis, a.k.a. Habu or Hon habu, a venomous pitviper found in the Ryukyu Islands of Japan

Ovophis okinavensis, a.k.a. the himehabu, a venomous pitviper found in the Ryukyu Islands of Japan


Protobothrops is a genus of pit vipers.

Ryukyu Islands

The Ryukyu Islands (琉球諸島, Ryūkyū-shotō), also known as the Nansei Islands (南西諸島, Nansei-shotō, lit. "Southwest Islands") or the Ryukyu Arc (琉球弧, Ryūkyū-ko), are a chain of Japanese islands that stretch southwest from Kyushu to Taiwan: the Ōsumi, Tokara, Amami, Okinawa, and Sakishima Islands (further divided into the Miyako and Yaeyama Islands), with Yonaguni the westernmost. The larger are mostly high islands and the smaller mostly coral. The largest is Okinawa Island.

The climate of the islands ranges from humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa) in the north to tropical rainforest climate (Köppen climate classification Af) in the south. Precipitation is very high and is affected by the rainy season and typhoons. Except the outlying Daitō Islands, the island chain has two major geologic boundaries, the Tokara Strait (between the Tokara and Amami Islands) and the Kerama Gap (between the Okinawa and Miyako Islands). The islands beyond the Tokara Strait are characterized by their coral reefs.

The Ōsumi and Tokara Islands, the northernmost of the islands, fall under the cultural sphere of the Kyushu region of Japan; the people are ethnically Japanese and speak a variation of the Kagoshima dialect of Japanese. The Amami, Okinawa, Miyako, and Yaeyama Islands have a native population collectively called the Ryukyuan people, named for the former Ryukyu Kingdom that ruled them. The varied Ryukyuan languages are traditionally spoken on these islands, and the major islands have their own distinct languages. In modern times, the Japanese language is the primary language of the islands, with the Okinawan Japanese dialect prevalently spoken. The outlying Daitō Islands were uninhabited until the Meiji period, when their development was started mainly by people from the Izu Islands south of Tokyo, with the people there speaking the Hachijō language.

Administratively, the islands are divided into Kagoshima Prefecture (specifically the islands administered by Kagoshima District, Kumage Subprefecture/District, and Ōshima Subprefecture/District) in the north and Okinawa Prefecture in the south, with the divide between the Amami and Okinawa Islands, with the Daitō Islands part of Okinawa Prefecture. The northern (Kagoshima) islands are collectively called the Satsunan Islands, while the southern part of the chain (Okinawa Prefecture) are called the Ryukyu Islands in Chinese.

T. elegans

T. elegans may refer to:

Tenuipalpus elegans, a mite species

Thalasseus elegans, the elegant tern, a seabird species found on the Pacific coasts of the southern United States and Mexico and winters south to Peru, Ecuador and Chile

Theocolax elegans, a parasitoid wasp species

Tibouchina elegans, an ornamental plant species native to Brazil

Tritoniopsis elegans, synonym: Tritonia elegans, a marine dendronotid nudibranch species

Tutelina elegans, a jumping spider

Tynanthus elegans, a flowering plant species

Typhlops elegans, a snake species found on the island of Príncipe, São Tomé and Príncipe



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