The Snakes of Trinidad and Tobago
Scientific fact meets island folklore as Hans Boos presents more than sixty species of snakes found in the twin-island independent Caribbean nation of Trinidad and Tobago. The culmination of thirty years of collecting and observing the snakes of these islands, The Snakes of Trinidad and Tobago engagingly informs readers about these often feared and misunderstood creatures.
Tracing the contributions of scientists to the evolving taxonomy of the islands' reptiles, Boos describes each unique species of snake found on the two islands, including local names from two centuries back. Species accounts come complete with tales—both documented and apocryphal—of human encounters with the more dangerous island snakes. Forty-eight color photographs and fifty black-and-white photographs and pieces of line art, most by the author, illustrate the text and aid in identification.
While tiny Tobago is mercifully devoid of poisonous snakes, Trinidad hosts four venomous species, including coral snakes and the notorious bushmaster. Boos refutes many of the myths about these deadly but usually nonaggressive snakes with information about their habits and behavior. He also writes about the giant anaconda and the boa constrictor, about which many half-truths and fictions abound.
All snakes bite, but only a few species are venomous. Boos gives information about what to do—and what not to do—in the event of a bite and discusses intriguing folk medicine cures, such as the Belgian Black Stone, sure to work only if a bite was harmless to begin with.
The Snakes of Trinidad and Tobago will find an enthusiastic audience among herpetologists, ecologists, and other scientists concerned about the snakes and wildlife of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean, and South America. It will also appeal to general readers interested in snakes and in Caribbean folklore.
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Taxonomy and Species Accounts
BoidaeBoas and Pythons
adult aesculapii Amaral AMNH anaconda Anilius scytale antidote Atractus Beebe Belgian Black Stone belly bite bitten bizona BMNH boas body Boettger Boos Bothrops atrox Boulenger British Museum burrowing bushmaster carinatus Chacachacare Chironius Clelia clelia Club collected color constrictor coral snake cribo cure Ditmars Dixon dorsal Drymarchon eggs Emsley Erythrolamprus false coral fangs feeds feet Field Naturalists FMNH found on Trinidad frogs Genus Greenhall Guiana Hardy head Island killed Lachesis muta Leptodeira Leptophis Leptotyphlops Liophis listed lizards macajuel machete mapepire balsain mapepire zanana Mastigodryas boddaerti Mertens Micrurus lemniscatus Mole and Urich Murphy natural history neck NMBE noted Oxybelis Oxyrhopus Plate poison Port of Spain prey Pseudoboa neuwiedii Pseustes recorded reported reptiles Roze scales skin snakebite snakes of Trinidad South America species specimen subcaudals subspecies tail tree Trinidad and Tobago Trinidad Field Trinidad Guardian Typhlops USNM Venezuela venomous snakes ventrals Verteuil victim Wagler Wehekind yellow young
Page xv - AMNH — American Museum of Natural History, New York ANSP — Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia...
Page 230 - TABAGO ; or, A Geographical Description, Natural and Civil History, Together with a full Representation of the Produce, and other Advantages arising from the Fertility, excellent Harbours, and happy Situation of that famous Island.
Page 231 - They purport to be usable lists, admitted to be necessary, for any study of the higher vertebrates of British Guiana with special reference to the fauna of the Bartica district — the species which Beebe has actually found there being starred with an asterisk.
Page 246 - Biological notes upon some of the Ophidia of Trinidad, BWI, with a preliminary list of the species recorded from the Island.