Friday, August 26, 2016

Anaconda or Huilla, Eunectes murinus (Family Boidae)

Size. 7.6 m TL, females larger than males, neonates about 65 mm TL. The largest extant snake but not the longest. Diagnosis. The lack of labial pits, four symmetrical scales between eyes, and presence of subocular scales (between the eye and upper labials) will distinguish the anaconda from all other Trinidad and Tobago snakes. Loreal single; one preocular; one to four postoculars; usually two, sometimes one or three suboculars; 14–17 upper labials; 15–25 lower labials; 241–269 ventrals; anal plate single; 65–72 single subcaudals. Small, smooth dorsal scales in 53–69 rows at midbody. Dorsum olive brown with one or two rows of 36–45 dark brown or black blotches, and a lateral row of light-centered ocelli. Distribution. Widespread Amazonian species: Venezuela, Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, the Guyanas, Trinidad (not present on Tobago). Life History. A highly aquatic, nocturnal species that uses swamps, marshes, rivers, and quarries. Diet includes a variety of vertebrates: amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. Reproduction. Courtship and copulation in December-January, 19–82 young born in July-August. Other common names: Anaconda, Huilla (pronounced 'weel') Water Boa,

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