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New Species of Viper found in Honduras

by on May 20, 2013

Bula Bug

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A new species of green palm-pitviper of the genus Bothriechis is described from a seriously threatened cloud forest reserve in northern Honduras. Because of similarity in color pattern and scalation, the new species (Bothriechis guifarroi) was previously confused with other Honduran palm pitvipers. Genetic analysis revealed that the closest relatives of the new species are actually found over 600 km to the south, in the mountains of Costa Rica.

The study was published in the open access journal Zookeys.

The gorgeous new species was discovered by scientists during two expeditions in 2010 aimed at studying the fauna of Texiguat Wildlife Refuge, one of the most endemism-rich and diverse highland forests in Mesoamerica. This beautiful, but highly toxic, snake represents the 15th endemic species occurring in the region. Texiguat Wildlife Refuge was created in 1987 to protect populations of wildlife such as the famous but elusive jaguar and…

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