Guatemala Neckband Snake (Half Coral Snake) - Scaphiodontophis annulatus
Though characterized by a coloration and pattern similar to that of the venomous coral snakes (genus Micrurus) and by extremely long and fragile tails, Scaphiodontophis annulatus (Colubridae) is actually a harmless snake, but presumably, both the coloration and the tail structure are putative defense mechanisms that protect the snakes from predatory attack.
In this species the color is variable in the extent of banding pattern, with some individuals showing the brightly colored pattern only on the anterior third or less of their bodies.
This snake is aglyphous (lacking grooves), which means that it has no specialized teeth and each tooth is similar in shape and often size. In Scaphiodontophis annulatus the maxillary teeth are peculiarly hinged and shovel-like, an adaptation for feeding on skinks.
The Guatemala Neckband Snake is a diurnal species that inhabits the leaflitter of mature wet forest in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador and Colombia.
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Photo credit: ©Josiah Townsend | Locality: La Liberación, 1030 m, Reserva de Vida Silvestre Texiguat, Honduras (2010)