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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: Colubroidea

Familia: Colubridae
Subfamilia: Natricinae
Genus: Opisthotropis
Species (26): O. alcalai – O. andersonii – O. atra – O. balteata – O. cheni – O. cucae – O. daovantieni – O. durandi – O. guangxiensis – O. haihaensis – O. hungtai – O. jacobi – O. kikuzatoi – O. kuatunensis – O. lateralis – O. latouchii – O. laui – O. maculosa – O. maxwelli – O. rugosa – O. shenzhenensis – O. spenceri – O. tamdaoensis – O. typica – O. voquyi – O. zhaoermii

Opisthotropis Günther, 1872: 16

Type species: Opisthotropis ater Günther, 1872, by monotypy.

Primary references

Günther, A. 1872. Seventh account of new species of snakes in the collection of the British Museum. Annals and Magazine of Natural History Series 4 9: 13–37. BHL

Additional references

David, P., Pham, C.T., Nguyen, T.Q. & Ziegler, T. 2011. A new species of the genus Opisthotropis Günther, 1872 (Squamata: Natricidae) from the highlands of Kon Tum Province, Vietnam. Zootaxa 2758: 43–56. Preview. Reference page.
Yang, J.-H., Wang, Y.-Y., Zhang, B., Lau, M.W.-N. & Chou, W.-H. 2011. Revision of the diagnostic characters of Opisthotropis maculosa Stuart and Chuaynkern, 2007 with notes on its distribution and variation, and a key to the genus Opisthotropis (Squamata: Natricidae). Zootaxa 2785: 61–68. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.2785.1.4 Open access. Reference page.
Ren, J.-L., Wang, K., Jianf, K., Guo, P. & Li, J.-T. 2017. A New Species of the Southeast Asian Genus Opisthotropis (Serpentes: Colubridae: Natricinae) from western Hunan, China. Zoological Research 38(5): 251–263. DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.068 Reference page.
Wang, Y-Y., Guo, Q., Liu, Z-Y., Lyu, Z-T., Wang, J., Luo, L., Sun, Y-J. & Zhang, Y-W. 2017. Revisions of two poorly known species of Opisthotropis Günther, 1872 (Squamata: Colubridae: Natricinae) with description of a new species from China. Zootaxa 4247(4): 391–412. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4247.4.3 Paywall Reference page.
Ziegler, T., David, P., Ziegler, T.N., Pham, T.C., Nguyen, T.Q. & Le, M.D. 2018. Morphological and molecular review of Jacob’s Mountain Stream Keelback Opisthotropis jacobi Angel & Bourret, 1933 (Squamata: Natricidae) with description of a sibling species from northern Vietnam. Zootaxa 4374(4): 476–496. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4374.4.2 Reference page.
Ziegler, T., Pham, C.T., Nguyen, T.V., Nguyen, T.Q., Wang, J., Wang, Y.-Y., Stuart, B.L. & Le, M.D. 2019. A new species of Opisthotropis from northern Vietnam previously misidentified as the Yellow-spotted Mountain Stream Keelback O. maculosa Stuart & Chuaynkern, 2007 (Squamata: Natricidae). Zootaxa 4613(3): 578–586. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4613.3.9 Paywall. Reference page.
Wang, J., Lyu, Z.-T., Zeng, Z.-C., Lin, C.-Y., Yang, J.-H., Nguyen, T.Q., Le, M.D., Ziegler, T. & Wang, Y.-Y. 2020. Re-examination of the Chinese record of Opisthotropis maculosa (Squamata, Natricidae), resulting in the first national record of O. haihaensis and description of a new species. Zookeys 913: 141–159. DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.913.48622 Open access Reference page.


Uetz, P. & Hallermann, J. 2021. Opisthotropis . The Reptile Database. Accessed on 11 October 2019.
Opisthotropis – Taxon details on Interim Register of Marine and Non-marine Genera (IRMNG).
Opisthotropis – Taxon details on Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS).

Vernacular names
English: Mountain Keelbacks

Opisthotropis is a genus of snakes in the family Colubridae. The genus is endemic to Southeast Asia and South China.

The genus Opisthotropis contains the following 25 species which are recognized as being valid, listed alphabetically by scientific name.[1][2]

Opisthotropis alcalai W. Brown & Leviton, 1961 – mountain keelback
Opisthotropis andersonii (Boulenger, 1888) – Anderson's stream snake[3]
Opisthotropis atra Günther, 1872
Opisthotropis cheni Zhao, 1999
Opisthotropis cucae David, Pham, T.Q. Nguyen & T. Ziegler, 2011 (found in Kontum, Vietnam)
Opisthotropis daovantieni Orlov, Darevsky & Murphy, 1998 – Tien's mountain stream snake
Opisthotropis durandi Teynié, Lottier, David, T.Q. Nguyen & G. Vogel, 2014 – Durand's mountain stream snake
Opisthotropis guangxiensis Zhao, Y.-M. Jiang & Huang, 1978 – Guangxi mountain keelback
Opisthotropis haihaensis T. Ziegler, Pham, T.V. Nguyen, T.Q. Nguyen, J. Wang, Y.-Y. Wang, Stuart & Le, 2019 – Hai Ha mountain stream keelback
Opisthotropis hungtai J. Wang, Lyu, Zeng, Lin, Yang, T.Q. Nguyen, Le, T. Ziegler & Y.-Y. Wang, 2020 – Hung-Ta Chang’s mountain keelback
Opisthotropis jacobi Angel & Bourret, 1933 – Chapa mountain keelback
Opisthotropis kikuzatoi (Okada & Takara, 1958) – Kikuzato's brook snake
Opisthotropis kuatunensis Pope, 1928 – Chinese mountain keelback
Opisthotropis lateralis Boulenger, 1903 – Tonkin mountain keelback
Opisthotropis latouchii (Boulenger, 1899) – Sichuan mountain keelback
Opisthotropis laui Yang, Sung & Chan, 2013 - Lau's mountain stream snake
Opisthotropis maculosa Stuart & Chuaynkern, 2007 – yellow-spotted mountain stream snake
Opisthotropis maxwelli Boulenger, 1914 – Maxwell's mountain keelback[3]
Opisthotropis rugosa (Lidth de Jeude, 1890)
Opisthotropis shenzhenensis Y.-Y. Wang, Q. Guo, Liu, Lyu, J. Wang, Luo, Sun & Zhang, 2017 – Shenzhen mountain stream snake
Opisthotropis spenceri M.A. Smith, 1918 – Spencer’s stream snake or Smith's mountain keelback
Opisthotropis tamdaoensis T. Ziegler, David & Vu, 2008
Opisthotropis typica (Mocquard, 1890) – olive mountain keelback
Opisthotropis voquyi T. Ziegler, David, T.N. Ziegler, Pham, T.Q. Nguyen & Le, 2018
Opisthotropis zhaoermii Ren, K. Wang, K. Jiang, P. Guo & Li, 2017

Nota bene: A binomial authority in parentheses indicates that the species was originally described in a genus other than Opisthotropis.

Opisthotropis. The Reptile Database.
Opisthotropis. ITIS (Integrated Taxonomic Information System).

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. (Opisthotropis andersonii, p. 8; O. maxwelli, p. 171).

Further reading

Günther A (1872). "Seventh Account of new Species of Snakes in the Collection of the British Museum". Annals and Magazine of Natural History, Fourth Series 9: 13–37. (Opisthotropis, new genus, p. 16).
Yang J-H, Wang Y-Y, Zhang B, Lau MW-N, Chou WH (2011). "Revision of the diagnostic characters of Opisthotropis maculosa Stuart and Chuaynkern, 2007 with notes on its distribution and variation, and a key to the genus Opisthotropis (Squamata: Natricidae)". Zootaxa 2785: 61–68.


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