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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Superphylum: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Megaclassis: Osteichthyes
Cladus: Sarcopterygii
Cladus: Rhipidistia
Cladus: Tetrapodomorpha
Cladus: Eotetrapodiformes
Cladus: Elpistostegalia
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: Colubroidea

Familia: Colubridae
Subfamilia: Colubrinae
Genus: Leptophis
Species: Leptophis ahaetulla
Subspecies: L. a. ahaetulla – L. a. bocourti – L. a. bolivianus – L. a. chocoensis – L. a. copei – L. a. liocercus – L. a. marginatus – L. a. nigromarginatus – L. a. occidentalis – L. a. ortonii – L. a. praestans

Leptophis ahaetulla (Linnaeus, 1758) [conserved name]

Lectotype: UUZM 2, donated by C. Gyllenborg in 1744. [designated by Savage & Oliver (1956: 149)]
Type locality: “Asia, America”, restricted to “South America” by Savage & Oliver (1956: 148).
Placed on the Official List of Specific Names in Zoology by Opinion 524 (1958: 264).


Coluber ahaetulla Linnaeus, 1758: 225 [original combination]
Leptophis ahaetulla — Bell, 1825: 328 [subsequent combination]


Coluber filiformis Linnaeus, 1758: 225 (fide Stejneger, 1933)
Coluber liocercus Wied, 1824: 665 (fide Stejneger, 1933)
Ahaetulla liocercus — Gray, 1831: 93
Dendrophis liocercus — Schlegel, 1837: 224
Leptophis liocercus — Duméril, Bibron & Duméril, 1854: 533
Leptophis liocercus — Boulenger, 1894: 113

Primary references

Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema Naturae per regna tria naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Editio Decima, Reformata. Tomus I. Holmiæ (Stockholm): impensis direct. Laurentii Salvii. 824 pp. DOI: 10.5962/bhl.title.542 BHL Reference page.
International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature. 1958. Opinion 524. Interpretation of the nominal species Coluber ahaetulla Linnaeus, 1758, and addition to the Official List of Generic Names in Zoology of the generic name Ahaetulla Link, 1807 with Ahaetulla mycterizans Link, 1807 as type species (Class Reptilia). pp. 261–276 In Hemming, F. (Ed.). Opinions and Declarations of the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature. Volume 19. International Trust for Zoological Nomenclature: London. BHL Reference page.

Additional references

Bell, T. 1825. Zool. Jour., London, 2: 328.
Andersson, L.G. 1899. Catalogue of Linnean type-specimens of snakes in the Royal Museum in Stockholm. Bihang till Kongliga Svenska Vetenskaps-Akademiens Handlingar 24(6): 1–35. BHL Reference page.
Boulenger, G.A. 1898. An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Mr. W. F. H. Rosenberg in western Ecuador. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1898: 107–126.


Uetz, P. & Hallermann, J. 2022. Leptophis ahaetulla. The Reptile Database. Accessed on 10 June 2022.
Gutiérrez-Cárdenas, P., Rivas, G., Nogueira, C., Gagliardi, G., Catenazzi, A. & Gonzales, L. 2019. IUCN: Leptophis ahaetulla (Least Concern). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T197499A2491090. DOI: 10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T197499A2491090.en. Accessed on 10 June 2022.

Vernacular names
Deutsch: Brasilianische Schlanknatter
English: Parrot Snake
italiano: Lora
português: Azulão-boia
українська: Тонка змія звичайна

Leptophis ahaetulla, commonly known as the lora or parrot snake, is a species of medium-sized slender snake of the family Colubridae.[3] It is endemic to Central America and northern South America.[4]


Central America: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, southern Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama.
South America: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Paraguay, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela.[1]


Adults may attain a total length of 172 cm (68 in), which includes a tail 59 cm (23 in) long.[2]

Dorsally, Leptophis ahaetulla is bright green, golden, or bronzy. The keels of the dorsal scales are black or dark brown. The head shields and the dorsal scales may be edged with black. On each side of the head is a black streak which passes through the eye. The upper lip and the belly are white or yellow. The species was thought to be non-venomous,[2] but it is mildly venomous with localized pain, swelling and a feeling "pins and needles" being the symptoms of envenomation. Symptoms disappear after a few hours.[citation needed]

The head is elongated and distinct from the neck. The eye is large with a round pupil. The body is slender, and the tail is long.[2]

The dorsal scales are arranged in 15 rows at mid-body and are strongly keeled except in the first row on each side (the row adjacent to the ventrals), where they are smooth. They are also smooth on the neck and tail.[2]

Ventrals 151-167 are strongly angulate at the sides, the anal plate is divided, and subcaudals 140-173 are divided.[2]

The loreal scale is absent, and the prefrontals extend through the loreal region to contact the upper labials. There are usually 2 postoculars, and the temporals are 1 + 2. There are 8-9 upper labials, of which the 4th & 5th (or 5th & 6th) enter the eye. The anterior chin shields are shorter than the posterior chin shields.[2]
Leptophis ahaetulla nigromarginatus (black-skinned parrot snake), Amazon Rainforest, near Nauta, Peru, 2011

Leptophis ahaetulla has currently ten recognized subspecies, including the nominotypical subspecies:[1]

Leptophis ahaetulla ahaetulla (Linnaeus, 1758)
Leptophis ahaetulla bocourti Boulenger, 1898
Leptophis ahaetulla bolivianus Oliver, 1942
Leptophis ahaetulla chocoensis Oliver, 1942
Leptophis ahaetulla liocercus (Wied, 1824)
Leptophis ahaetulla marginatus (Cope, 1862)
Leptophis ahaetulla nigromarginatus (Günther, 1866) - black-skinned parrot snake
Leptophis ahaetulla occidentalis (Günther, 1859)
Leptophis ahaetulla ortonii Cope, 1876
Leptophis ahaetulla praestans (Cope, 1868)

Leptophis coeruleodorsus Oliver, 1942 was formerly recognized as Leptophis ahaetulla coeruleodorsus.[1]

It feeds on lizards, frogs, and small birds.

Leptophis ahaetulla at the Reptile Database. Accessed 31 December 2017.
Boulenger, G.A. 1894. Catalogue of the Snakes in the British Museum (Natural History). Volume II., Containing the Conclusion of the Colubridæ Aglyphæ. Trustees of the British Museum (Natural History). (Taylor and Francis, Printers.) London. xi + 382 pp. + Plates I.- XX. (Leptophis, pp. 105-107; and Leptophis liocercus, pp. 113-114.)
Lawson, R.; Slowinski, J. B.; Crother, B. I.; Burbrink, F. T. (2005). "Phylogeny of the Colubroidea (Serpentes): New evidence from mitochondrial and nuclear genes" (PDF). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 37 (2): 581–601. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2005.07.016. PMID 16172004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-27.

Boos HEA (2001). The snakes of Trinidad and Tobago. Texas A&M University Press, College Station, TX. ISBN 1-58544-116-3.

Further reading

Freiberg, M. 1982. Snakes of South America. T.F.H. Publications. Hong Kong. 189 pp. ISBN 0-87666-912-7. (Leptophis ahaetulla, pp. 80, 101, 133 + photograph on p. 54.)
Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema naturæ per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, diferentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio Decima, Reformata. L. Salvius. Stockholm. 824 pp. ("Coluber Ahætulla", p. 225.)


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