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Apostolepis Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Superphylum: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Cladus: Craniata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Cladus: Reptiliomorpha
Cladus: Amniota
Classis: Reptilia
Cladus: Eureptilia
Cladus: Romeriida
Subclassis: Diapsida
Cladus: Sauria
Infraclassis: Lepidosauromorpha
Superordo: Lepidosauria
Ordo: Squamata
Subordo: Serpentes
Infraordo: Caenophidia
Superfamilia: Elapoidea

Familia: Elapidae
Subfamilia: Hydrophiinae
Genus: Hydrophis
Species: Hydrophis annandalei

Hydrophis annandalei (Laidlaw, 1901)

Uetz, P. & Hallermann, J. 2022. Hydrophis annandalei. The Reptile Database. Accessed on 2 June 2021.
Rasmussen, A., Sanders, K. & Lobo, A. 2010. IUCN: Hydrophis annandalei (Data Deficient). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T176731A7292396. DOI: 10.2305/IUCN.UK.2010-4.RLTS.T176731A7292396.en

Vernacular names
English: Bighead Sea Snake dorbignyi

Hydrophis annandalei, commonly known as Annandale's sea snake or the bighead sea snake, is a species of venomous snake in the subfamily Hydrophiinae of the family Elapidae. The species, which is sometimes placed in its own genus Kolpophis, is native to parts of the Indian Ocean.


The specific name, annandalei, is in honor of Scottish herpetologist Nelson Annandale.[3]
Geographic range

H. annandalei is found in the Indian Ocean, in waters off Indonesia (Borneo, Java), western Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, Thailand, and southern Vietnam.[1][2]

The preferred natural habitats of H. annandalei are shallow muddy coastal waters.[1]

H. annandalei may attain a snout-to-vent length (SVL) of 52 cm (20 in). Its coloration, which consists of dark crossbands on a bluish grey ground color dorsally, and which is uniform pale yellow or cream ventrally, is similar to that of other sea snakes. However, K. annandalei can be identified by its high number of dorsal scale rows, 74–93 at midbody.[4]

H. annandalei is viviparous.[2]

Rasmussen A, Sanders K, Lobo A (2010). "Kolpophis annandalei ". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2010: e.T176731A7292396. Retrieved 24 January 2020.
Hydrophis annandalei at the Reptile Database. Accessed 24 January 2020.
Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN 978-1-4214-0135-5. (Kolpophis annandalei, p. 9).

Das I (2006). Snakes and other Reptiles of Borneo. Sanibel Island, Florida: Ralph Curtis Books. 144 pp. ISBN 0-88359-061-1. (Kolpophis annandalei, p. 68).

Further reading

Das I (1993). "Annandales's seasnake, Kolpophis annandalei (Laidlaw 1901): a new record for Borneo". Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 41: 359-361.
Laidlaw FF (1901). "List of a Collection of Snakes, Crocodiles, and Chelonians from the Malay Peninsula, made by Members of the “Skeat Expedition,” 1899–1900". Proc. Zool. Soc. Lond. 1901 (2): 575-583 + Plate XXXV. (Distira annandalei, new species, pp. 579–580 + Plate XXXV, figures 1 & 2).
Smith MA (1926). Monograph of the Sea Snakes (Hydrophiidae). London: British Museum (Natural History). xvii + 130 pp. (Kolpophis, new genus, p. 106; Kolpophis annandalei, new combination, p. 106).
Smith MA (1943). The Fauna of British India, Ceylon and Burma, Including the Whole of the Indo-Chinese Sub-region. Reptilia and Amphibia. Vol. III.—Serpentes. London: Secretary of State for India. (Taylor and Francis, printers). xii + 583 pp. (Kolpophis annandalei, pp. 467–468).


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