Possible Country Records for the US

Dedicated exclusively to field herping.

Moderator: Scott Waters

User avatar
Correcamino
Posts: 444
Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:50 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Correcamino »

Chris,
I remember Jerry's remarks about Imantodes at B.H., but somewhere I found another reference but can't remember where at the moment.

Although a die hard crote fan, I will admit this ONCE, lol., I have always been fascinated by the anurans in southern Az. (paticularily B. debilis, B. retiformis, and Pternohyla) and spent many, many nights hunting and looking at them, Ajo Rd., Sasabe Rd. (you young whippersnappers all know the highway numbers, us old farts only remember the original names based on where the roads go, lol), never saw anything out of the ordinary other than a redspotted in a hole in a tree about 25 ft. above ground level.

I have also done some looking for Psuedoeurycea around here but obviously no luck yet, lol.

Although I would generally agree about the impossibility of Bipes in Az, ya still have to wonder. The rumors were here long before anyone knew what a Bipes was. Another thing I have always wondered about is Guajolote Flats in the Patagonias. Does "Guajolote" mean anything in Spanish? I know "Ajolote" is used for Bipes in Baja, "Guachochi" is the name used for Conopsis nasus in the Tarahumara region of Chihuahua. Is this a contraction of the two words if so what does it mean (other than the fact that I have way too much time to think while I drive my truck all night)

Rich

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

Guajolote = turkey.

User avatar
Correcamino
Posts: 444
Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:50 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Correcamino »

Ref the Tohono O'dum reservation I have never had any particular problem herping the main roads and never had any problemas with the Tribal Police. There did become an issue in the late 90's and early 2000's when someone blabbed about a certain road winding up a mountain and it turned into a Jamboree. I have twice been run out at gunpoint from the dirt road section. The real problem is the western slopes of the Baboquivaris and adjacent bajada. This is where many of the herps in question would most likely be. It is also the seat of the Tohono O'dum religion and considered sacred ground. White people are not wanted there. When I was a kid is was said you would never return should you go in, I have always been content with the East side, lol.

User avatar
Correcamino
Posts: 444
Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:50 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Correcamino »

"Guajolote = turkey".

Well, that would make perfect sense, lol. I only knew Pavo. Guess I better quite thinkin so much :)

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

I have been run-off the section of road running from Sells down to Vamori. I have also hunted successfully down there. Unfortunately, Amphibians and Turtles were the main concern at that time. The hills east of Vamori would be the interesting area to look, but like you said, that is the area the Indians seem the most protective over. I did make it into the hills once, but turned around because I didn't see good prospects for amphibians there.

I have a feeling there is a way to get permission to go on there though... you just need an Indian guide/ friend and ask permission from the tribal council first. Or hire the Indians, offer them $200 USD pero Boa constrictor. That should solve the problem, although it's only a matter of time until they figure out their primos can get what you are looking for more easily in Sonora.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

Jackson:

The "no roads" excuse is really not going to cut it. Half the stuff I look for doesn't have good roads. If you can't get in asking permission, then go in on a dirt bike. Those hills are criss/crossed by BP trails anyhow, hitch a ride with them if you have to. Tell them you are a Mexican and then bust on US Passport on them when you see some rocks you want to hunt. I think I could have probably gotten to ditmarsi and rosaceum habitat in the US from Hwy. 2 this last October if I had wanted to... that might be illegal though I don't know. I will say one thing though... if it were greeri or some new boa or something people would have made it in there already. LOL.

Chris

User avatar
The Real Snake Man
Posts: 405
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: Pasadena, CA or Mission, TX

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by The Real Snake Man »

It's gonna drive me nuts if no one explains what that rattlesnake is.

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

JJ: I was excluding Sonora/ Sinaloa because they have been sampled better and more frequently, not because of dryness. Sinaloa is definitely wetter than the Tepalcatepec, no doubt. I am thinking for an unsampled Bipes population to exist you need three things:

1. An area that has not been thoroughly sampled by biologists.
2. Arid climate (like dry TDF or drier, as in the first couple miles of the coast and inland valleys in rain shadows)
3. Sandy Soil

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
azatrox
Posts: 793
Joined: June 9th, 2010, 5:51 am
Location: Arizona

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by azatrox »

The snake is a dead ringer for a lep klaub x pricei.

-Kris

Jackson Shedd
Posts: 147
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:48 pm

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Jackson Shedd »

Don Cascabel wrote:Jackson:

The "no roads" excuse is really not going to cut it. Half the stuff I look for doesn't have good roads. If you can't get in asking permission, then go in on a dirt bike. Those hills are criss/crossed by BP trails anyhow, hitch a ride with them if you have to. Tell them you are a Mexican and then bust on US Passport on them when you see some rocks you want to hunt. I think I could have probably gotten to ditmarsi and rosaceum habitat in the US from Hwy. 2 this last October if I had wanted to... that might be illegal though I don't know. I will say one thing though... if it were greeri or some new boa or something people would have made it in there already. LOL.

Chris
Well hold on, I wasn't making excuses. That's rough country with a lack of rds, which presents a problem, but I never said I wasn't going to try and put in some survey time! I'm sure there are some dirt rds accessible by the right vehicles. Hell, I might even try contacting BP to see if the regular agents patrolling that area have seen any habitat that's similar to where ditmarsi occurs near Cananea (I don't have access to photos of the habitat s. of NM). It's the time factor for me these days, but I'll make it work.

User avatar
The Real Snake Man
Posts: 405
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: Pasadena, CA or Mission, TX

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by The Real Snake Man »

Another one that's been nagging at me; if Texas were not so well sampled, how likely would it be that we would have ornate cantils here?

User avatar
Natalie McNear
Posts: 1147
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:54 pm
Location: Northern coast of California
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Natalie McNear »

What I don't get is why there aren't too many neotropical snakes in southern Texas... I mean there are Drymobius, Leptodiera, and a few others (I think?), but why don't we have Boa constrictor up there for example. This thread talks about the possibility of that species in Arizona, at least 31°N, since the northernmost vouchered record I've been able to locate is at almost 30°N... But the southernmost point of Texas is about 25°N and has a seemingly much more hospitable climate than southern Arizona as well as the region in northern Sonora where B. constrictor is verified. Why is this? Why would a largely tropical species range far into the northern deserts but be absent in basically tropical regions to the southeast?

I know south Texas is much, much more developed and explored than southeast Arizona - could that have something to do with it? Would it be possible that B. constrictor was there in the recent past but was extirpated when the land was cleared for agriculture and perhaps intentional extermination, like the jaguar?

erik loza
Posts: 244
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 8:01 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by erik loza »

The thing about South Texas is that aside from the Lower Rio Grande Valley (Brownsville area), it is mostly dry mesquite scrub. The Cat-eyes are only found in that one little area, just like Drymobius, whereas the Indigos can go anywhere they have access to surface water. For example, you can find them in Del Rio, which is dry desert and Gray-band country.

I am not a scientist but my feeling is that simple answer to your question is that on the Pacific side, there are no major geographic boundaries like high altitude mountain ranges that would prevent Sonoran species from advancing north.

On the Gulf side, you have the high altitudes and dry deserts of the Sierra Madre basically bisecting the spine of Mexico. You see lots of Tamaulipan species in the Gulf, but I doubt Sonoran ones can make it over here.

JUst my my lay-opinion, for what it's worth.

scott s
Posts: 144
Joined: August 13th, 2010, 4:36 pm

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by scott s »

How many miles south of Brownsville TX to you have to go to find Boas?

Aren't they fairly close to the border down there?

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

I think temperatures drop more in S. Texas than in Sonora, that prevents things from spreading north. For example, you would be hardpressed to find a day where the day time temps are under 32 in Hermosillo, ever, but in Monterrey, and probably Reynosa as well, that can surely happen (cold fronts scooting down the great plains). Boas make it within about 50 miles of the Arizona border, and about 100 of the Texas border. Other stuff ranges further north on the east side. For example Rhinophrynus, make it to Texas on the east side, but only to Michoacán on the west side. Coniophanes seem to drop out around Mazatlán (still in the tropics) on the west side, but make it to Texas on the east side.

The cantils range as far north as southern Nuevo León, but along the wet, tropical slopes of the Sierra Madre Occidental. I think the northernmost record is around Santiago. On the coast, it is around Soto La Marina/ La Pesca. You guys just barely missed it. As far as Boas go, they get close, but I don't believe they would have been extirpated. They live in some disturbed stuff in Mexico... it's temps that are limiting them. Sonora just doesn't get that cold, and where it does, they live in sheltered valleys. The LACK OF geography probably limits them on the east coast, since it's all flat, there are no warm pockets in the barrancas that allow them to range further north.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

For what it's worth, I think Boas have been registered at Magdalena de Kino, about 91 km S of Arizona driving, probably about 80 air KM. On the east side, I think the closest point would be about around San Fernando, around 180 km S of Texas.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Natalie McNear
Posts: 1147
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:54 pm
Location: Northern coast of California
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Natalie McNear »

I looked up the locations of some northern Sonoran boa records, and the habitat looks, as far as I can tell, exactly the same as many areas of southeast Arizona. Just looking at these areas on Google Earth, it seems like the top spot for looking for boas in the US would be the Pajarito Mountains and surrounding areas, but that whole region gets scoured by herpers every year and it makes me wonder... Could a snake that large really go undetected for that long in one of the biggest herping meccas in the country? Seems probable to me that this species does not reach the United States, but one can always hope. I'm just curious as to why they would be present south of the border, but absent a short distance north in identical habitat.

scott s
Posts: 144
Joined: August 13th, 2010, 4:36 pm

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by scott s »

Years ago, I caught boas about 100 miles south of AZ and I remember the habitat/vegetation being a bit wetter, greener, thicker and taller where the boas were than what it was like at the border.

Maybe someone else can be more specific.

User avatar
azatrox
Posts: 793
Joined: June 9th, 2010, 5:51 am
Location: Arizona

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by azatrox »

Frank brings up a good point...

Most herpers that herp that area do so by cruising the road...generally they all do it at the same times...there are TONS of canyons, washes, etc. that see virtually no human contact. It is possible that Boa constrictor makes it into the Pajaritos, but not where everyone herps.

Most of the species that people look for there can be cruised, and (as human nature dictates) herpers often take the path of least resistance when looking for their targets. It's alot easier to cruise a snake than it is to hike it out.

-Kris

User avatar
jonathan
Posts: 3666
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 7:39 am
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by jonathan »

Whenever I think about this subject I wonder about travel distances.

To take an extreme case, suppose an impregnated female under some sort of stresser began moving further north - how many kilometers could she travel before having young? And if those young, finding themselves in non-ideal habitat, also began to move with distance, and happened to get a few unusually favorable weather years, how much further north could they potentially make it?

So in such a scenario, how close to the border would a population have to be for occasional extreme wanderers to make it into the States? 10km? 30km? I have no clue how far a boa could possibly move over a lifetime - perhaps it's not even that far.

On the negative side, are those northernmost Mexican records representative of established populations or isolated finds? Because if they're only isolated finds, then perhaps my scenario applied and those records are not actually indicative of the conditions that can support boas, and in fact the only established populations are even further south.

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

The Boas in n. Sonora are just like the Bogertophis in n. Baja. Prime habitat for them drops off a few hundred miles to the south, however they persist in certain canyons (not necesarrily palm canyons in the boas case, although that is accurate with the Bogertophis) towards the north. I am aware of at least two or three spots just south of the US border where Bogertophis have been found, and apparently there is at least one north of the border where they occur (this explains the mountain springs record). Now the likely scenario is that while the Bogies are IN that canyon, they do not inhabit the surrounding areas (unsuitable), and even though those areas are HEAVILY HERPED (Mountain Springs) only one specimen has turned up (1984 specimen, likely a cruiser going from one pop to find another). Same applies in the Pajaritos. Quite possibly they are in Sycamore Canyon, but not on the surrounding hills that everyone roadcruises. So, unless one decides to leave the canyon to disperse, you would only find them by hiking the canyon. How many of you (non-birders) have hiked Sycamore Canyon looking for triaspis or Oxybelis??? Now Sycamore Canyon may not be the one, but certainly some of the Canyons in the Baboquivaris or the hills to the west of them could have them and have not been hiked, not even by birders. FWIW, I've heard BP talk about Boas in Sycamore, I just wrote it off for BS... Also, Natalie, Boa constrictor in Sonora definitely lives in wooded canyons and riparian areas, but they also live in straight Mesquite-Grassland Desert and Sonoran Upland Desert. It would be just as believable to me that someone pulls one off a rocky, Saguaro hillside around Sells somewhere as from some wooded canyon in the Pajaritos. Look at the hills directly north of Hermosillo (with the hwy. through them) or directly SE of Magdalena (towards Cucurpé) for reference on GE.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Natalie McNear
Posts: 1147
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:54 pm
Location: Northern coast of California
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Natalie McNear »

I've hiked about 1.5 miles down that canyon a few times (always herping the walls too), but I probably wouldn't be able to hike more than about 2 miles or so simply because I can't carry enough water to last herping on the way there and heading back. Further down there is some great habitat with more trees and better rocks, but it's just a matter of getting there. Same with the Baboquivaris... It looks awesome from the west with plenty of wooded canyons, but from what I understand you can only access the eastern side of those mountains unless you want to hike up and over to the other side (and I'm thinking that would probably get you in trouble, since it's all Indian land and they consider the area sacred).

Maybe the next time I'm down in those parts I'll print out a picture of a Sonoran boa and ask some of the border crossers if they've seen any lately. :D

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

I've got video of some boas crawling out of deserty nonsense near Hermosillo - I'll see if I can find it. It wouldn't surprise me if someone got Lichanura and Boa constrictor sympatrically on the Hermosillo<->Sahuaripa hwy.

-JJ

User avatar
chrish
Posts: 3295
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:14 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by chrish »

There are a few tropical species that occur in NE Mexico that could be found in South Texas. The coastal scrub of NE Tamaulipas crosses the border so it wouldn't be a shock if some thorn-scrub species did the same.

Just off the top of my head (which means only considering snakes :lol: )....

Coniophanes piceivittis
Ficimia olivacea wouldn't shock me if it showed up on the US side of the border. Of course, if you think F. streckeri = olivacea, then they are here already.

I keep looking for Crotalus totonacus in the scrubby brush at Laguna Atascosa NWR. That would be a fun one!

Of course, south Texas is northern Mexico anyway, so the point is kind of moot down here.

My take on what is happening is that tropical species peter out a few at a time starting south of Cd. Victoria right at the tropic of Cancer. The more mesic forests of the Sierra Madre Oriental stop pretty quickly as you pass north of Victoria. Some tropical species (Sceloporus variabilis, Drymarchon) make it quite a ways north (north of San Antonio, TX). Other species barely make the border (Drymobius, Smilisca) while other fall a bit shorter of the border (Coniophanes piceivittis, etc.).

Boas occur in NE Mexico, but I think it is mostly too dry for them much further north. You don't really find any mesic areas until you get south about 150-200 miles along the coast and inland you get too high for them. I would be VERY skeptical of any Boa found in the Rio Grande Valley.

And unlike the NM/AZ border with mexico, across from south TX the coastal lowlands are heavily farmed. If there was a species of tropical herp that could survive in the "xeric sorghum prairies" of NE Mexico, it would already be in the US. I suspect that factor as much as anything else means that a new species won't be found in the US. They've been cut off too long from the main population.

And of course, Texas would protect it anyway like they do other border-blind herps (Leptodeira, Rhinophrynus, Smilisca, Drymobius, Coniophanes imperialis). These are common, widespread tropical species that are in no danger of extinction, but are protected in Texas?

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

I believe they have gotten them sympatrically on the libramiento north of town. Not sure though... I don't have those records in front of me.

Chris

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

I took a screenshot of a relevant rainfall overlay. The values in the legend on the right are in mm of precip.
Image

The most northern confirmed outposts for Agkistrodon bilineatus (on the east coast) and Crotalus totonacus are right there by Monterrey in that swath of red that tapers out.

North of Monterrey (NE of Apodaca) there's another spot of red that might be a good spot to check what might make it even further north.

Re: boas, it's not the dryness (or at least it's not just the dryness) keeping boas out of N TAM. The light greys east of Hermosillo in Sonora are full of boas. I can see habitat (alteration?) being a player, since northern Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon are pretty much just flat grasslands.


IMO that northern finger of black in N NL would be the most interesting to investigate since it's got some actual topography which might limit the habitat alteration, and give some extra wet canyons that don't show up at this level. Unfortunately, that exact area is a warzone, and you couldn't pay me to herp that region right now (or the black stretch in NE TAM).

User avatar
jonathan
Posts: 3666
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 7:39 am
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by jonathan »

This is by far the best thread of this type I've seen.

Paul White
Posts: 2288
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 8:52 pm
Location: Amarillo, Texas

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Paul White »

has anyone seen a good range map for boas (or other Mexican herps) that overlays a political map? That might help me visualize some of this. I've tried searching and I've found tons of range maps but they don't have political boundaries on them and it makes it hard to know just how close/far they are from Az or NM or TX.

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

chrish wrote:Boas occur in NE Mexico, but I think it is mostly too dry for them much further north.
You do that area a lot more than I do, what's the furthest north you've seen boas up there?

User avatar
ratsnakehaven
Posts: 2272
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 8:08 am
Location: Southern Arizona

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by ratsnakehaven »

Chris, I hiked Sycamore Can. one morning last monsoon season in a party of five and all we saw was a ringneck, couple garters, amphibs, and a couple border crossers. If boas are there I'm sure they'll get spotted eventually. Others hike this canyon. BTW, it's on my list of places to visit again this year.

Best....Terry

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

JJ's map is a perfect illustration of why many species that make it to Tamaulipas/ NL don't make it to Texas. That red moisture is vital for a lot of the tropical species, and it just does not make it into Texas. It does however make it far up into Sonora. About 80% of the tropical species that make it to the border states (Sonora/ Tamaulipas) drop out where the red drops out. The rest make it to the states, with the exception of a select few which are the probables we are talking about.

In the specific case of the Boas, I don't think that moisture is there limiting factor. I think it's temps (as I said above). Hermosillo is dry as hell and there are a bunch of Boa records from there, whereas se. NL is very moist and there are none. The northeast has colder low temps in the winter than Sonora.

On another note, Chrish... I think Coniophanes piceivittis (and C. fissidens for that matter, another TAM denizen) are tropical snakes and they do not make it near the border. F. olivacea I have found in dry habitat, although it seems to be more closely associated with the SMOriental and F. streckeri more from the coastal plain, so that is probably why F. olivacea hasn't been found close to Texas. The totonacus likely make it close, though I think one would have turned up by now if they crossed the border.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

JJ: Think about how many times you have seen photos of snow in Monterrey. Now think Hermosillo... get my drift?

Terry: Sycamore Canyon was an example given... I think probably most country records are going to show up either on the Res, in the Baboquivaris, or possibly in some lower canyons in the Patagonias. NOT in the Pajaritos... too much traffic, but you never know....

Chris

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

Don Cascabel wrote:JJ: Think about how many times you have seen photos of snow in Monterrey.
Yea, I think that's going to be it. Even though those areas where the boas are common are a bit more inland from Hermosillo, higher, and colder, they're still not nearly as cold as that gulf coast. Even places at sea level there have considerably more days with temps below freezing than Hermosillo. Sounds like a good enough reason to me.

This all makes Crotalus totonacus a champ. They can put up with ~30 days of freezing lows from Nov-Feb near Monterrey. I guess its not that shocking since they do 2000+ elevations further south, but still pretty neat.

-JJ

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

What dude? Totonacus are a Crotalus related to molossus. OF COURSE they can deal with Monterrey. Zacatecas or Chihuahua anybody??? LOL. Boas I don't think go underground very much, but rather sleep in trees (or bushes). I think cold night time lows could really ruin it for them. That being said, Leptophis (and probably) Oxybelis should be limited by the same stuff. Ironically, they all have pretty much the same range in Tamaulipas. None of them make it into Nuevo León, and none of them make it past c. Tamaulipas. Both go far north in Sonora, one reaches Az.

Cheers,

Chris

Crotalus
Posts: 180
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:05 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Crotalus »

here's another relevant map. The overlay shows elevations < 950m. If the issue is low temps, then those fingers of low elevation arroyos should be the better bets for corridors to mexican greatness (1 south of Agua Prieta, and another SE of Sasabe). According to the rainfall overlay, the one by Agua Prieta is considerably wetter...so make that option 1.

Image

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

Obviously desert stuff limited by temps souch as Phyllodactylus homolepidurus, Ctenosaura macrolopha and poss. Trimorphodon tau (they can do some cold areas, so something else may be at play there) would be more likely on the west side. More moisture loving stuff like Snail Suckers, Milksnakes, Anoles and Imantodes would probably follow that eastern corridor.

On another interesting note, I believe there is an old record for Acris crepitans from Cochise Co. somewhere. This was brought to my attention by Alan Resetar back in the day. He asked me what I thought... apparently there is a record of Acris from NM closeby (Lordsburg I believe), but everyone doubted the AZ record. I pointed out to him that Leptodactylus goes up the Agua Prieta corridor at least to Moctezuma (though probably more like Nácori Chico) and that he should double-check and make sure it's not one of those.... if I remember correctly the specific spring had some fish in it that were only known from Sonora, so it made sense at the time. Not sure what ever happened of it... I never heard anything again on the subject.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

Someone should invite Eric Enderson or Phil Rosen to this discussion!

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

BUMP!!!

This was a great Discussion last year. Bumping it to see if we can get any US herpers to look for the "unlookeD for" this year!

Some really gooD insight was in this post. I really think there are some species left to be DiscovereD in the US, especially sc. Arizona anD sw. New Mexico. Also Bogertophis anD possibly EriDiphas in s. Cali. S. Texas probably has more new species from Tx on the Mexican siDe than vice versa.

Some input on the boas in s. Tx.... in my opinion, it is colD temps that limit them. As I saiD before, they sleep in trees, not burrows, anD freezing temps really ought to Do a number on them. If you search for pics of snow on Google Images, you can finD quite a few for Tamaulipas, incluDing coastal localities, yet Hermosillo anD surrouning non-mountain N. Sonoran cities Don't seem to get it. Probably sub-zero temps are the limiting factor, anD TX anD n. Tam. are just above the line (also NL).

Cheers anD have fun... all you sw. herpers that want to feel like you are HarDcore shoulD be looking for these :)

Chris

User avatar
Don Cascabel
Posts: 201
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:44 am
Location: Colima, México

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Don Cascabel »

ReD anD pink is Northern Boa Range... pretty exactly! Image

It can get interesting in the Sonoran barrancas though because unlike Tamaulipas the geographic ups and downs can cause quite a dramatic difference in temps from one basin to the next.

Cheers,

Chris

User avatar
chris_mcmartin
Posts: 2440
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 11:13 pm
Location: Greater Houston TX Area
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by chris_mcmartin »

Without re-reading the entire thread...are you trying to send us a coded message with all the capital "D"s?

User avatar
FunkyRes
Posts: 1994
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 5:19 am
Location: Redding, CA
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by FunkyRes »

This threaD rocks!

User avatar
FunkyRes
Posts: 1994
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 5:19 am
Location: Redding, CA
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by FunkyRes »

Natalie McNear wrote:
DFRetes wrote:Back to boas, we Bill Garska and I, investigated a report by a forest ranger. He was on horseback and found what sounded like an adult boa. 7ft long, fat, dark brown, etc. This was also in the same area as vinesnakes and the cateyed snake. Which by the way, is directly north in the same mountain ranges as the most northern boa populations.
Sounds like someone likely overestimated the size of a dark adult gophersnake they saw. B. c. imperator of the northern mountains of Sonora are a dwarf variety, even the females only get slightly over 5 feet in length.
Possible, but people report snakes as longer than they actually were all the time, so it could have been a 5 ft Boa.

User avatar
Cole Grover
Posts: 745
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 9:06 am
Location: Montana

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Cole Grover »

Chris G.,

It's been a few years since we talked about it, but I'd like to hear more on your thoughts on milks making it up some of those more mesic canyons/valleys from Sonora and Chihuahua. I've heard reports of a more "arcifera-looking" form found further inland than the typical sinaloae from the coastal low-lands. It's mentioned in Williams' monograph on the species, too (though he dismisses the notion). That look could quite possibly be due to genetic influence from the celaenops/taylori-type animals seen in southern Arizona. It seems silly to think that they stop at the border in Arizona, New Mexico, or West Texas, like they're often mapped. There seems to be no real barrier, at least to me.

-Cole

VICtort
Posts: 689
Joined: July 2nd, 2010, 5:48 pm
Location: AZ.

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by VICtort »

There was a guy working with sharp-tailed snakes in Oregon/California a couple years ago that discovered a new species of sharp-tail. His name alludes me at the senior moment, but I'll come with it later, I'm sure.

TC[/quote]

Richard Hoyer perhaps? Richard is well known here, he has an avid interest in Charina amongst others...and recently, Contia.

User avatar
Correcamino
Posts: 444
Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:50 am

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Correcamino »

Cole Grover wrote:Chris G.,

It's been a few years since we talked about it, but I'd like to hear more on your thoughts on milks making it up some of those more mesic canyons/valleys from Sonora and Chihuahua. I've heard reports of a more "arcifera-looking" form found further inland than the typical sinaloae from the coastal low-lands. It's mentioned in Williams' monograph on the species, too (though he dismisses the notion). That look could quite possibly be due to genetic influence from the celaenops/taylori-type animals seen in southern Arizona. It seems silly to think that they stop at the border in Arizona, New Mexico, or West Texas, like they're often mapped. There seems to be no real barrier, at least to me.

-Cole
I have no doubt that Taylaenops occurs thru appropriate grasslands of N.E. Sonora. Wether they interbreed with sinelsoni, I don't know. I feel (I'm sure you probbaly agree) that sinaloae and the forms south are probably a different species than the gentilis/multistrata/taylori/celaenops/gentilis/dixoni forms. Body, and especially the head shapes amongst other things, are completely different. I do know DNA work was being done on this but can't remember if it was ever finished or published yet. Like many other species such as Leaf and shovelnosed snakes, milks have a tendency to have much wider bands the further south into Sonora you go. The southern Az. milks tend to be much wider banded that the northern Az. milks although they are otherwise just the same thing (in my opinion, lol) Hard to say for sure what williams mentiuons, could be the southern limit of celaenops type snakes, or the extreme north of sinaloa (they go quite far north into northeast Sonora) I would tend to think that would be the celaenops type of snake which can look very much like what we used to call the pet trade "arcifera" (which we now know are really ruthveni..(some Jalisco examples)
Image

Image

True "arcifera" from the Chapala area are definitely milks, and oftern very odd looking ones at that. There seems to be a lot of variation.



CC

User avatar
Cole Grover
Posts: 745
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 9:06 am
Location: Montana

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Cole Grover »

Rich,

You're probably correct about there being two different species. It would be interesting to see if annulata and polyzona (or dixoni or smithi) intergrade in the east. Gene flow (or the lack thereof) would be telling. The same story in the northwest, too. If the type critters found in southern AZ "party" with the sinaloae-type further south in some inland valleys, that could be interesting. Whether they intergrade or maintain distinct identies would be a fascinating (and narco-tastic) thing to look into.

-Cole

User avatar
Mike Pingleton
Posts: 1470
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 6:45 am
Location: One of the boys from Illinois
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Mike Pingleton »

I'm glad to see this great thread resurrected!
-Mike

User avatar
chrish
Posts: 3295
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:14 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact:

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by chrish »

Cole Grover wrote:Rich,

You're probably correct about there being two different species. It would be interesting to see if annulata and polyzona (or dixoni or smithi) intergrade in the east. Gene flow (or the lack thereof) would be telling. The same story in the northwest, too. If the type critters found in southern AZ "party" with the sinaloae-type further south in some inland valleys, that could be interesting. Whether they intergrade or maintain distinct identies would be a fascinating (and narco-tastic) thing to look into.

-Cole
Annulata and polyzona do intergrade. Milksnakes just get bigger as you go south in the lowlands of the east coast. I think in the lowlands all the way down into the Yucatan you are dealing with the same species. What's happening in the uplands and the west coast is a different story.

On the topic of possible new Mexican species in the US, I think an interesting area with potential is the mountains of West Texas, particularly the mountains of an area like Black Gap WMA. How much herping has been done in the low ranges between Monclova and the Big Bend? The habitat is fairly contiguous and not that disturbed because it is arid. Maybe something like Sceloporus chrysostictus? I really don't know much about the fauna of that sliver of Mexico to postulate.

In south Texas, I think the tropical species that make it north have been found. First off, unlike the areas west of there (until you reach San Diego) the Lower Rio Grande Valley is heavily populated and farmed. And the corridors for dispersal north out of Mexico are now pretty much wrecked.
At least the aridity and orography further west makes the habitat more easily traversed by potential herp migrants.

Maybe something like Leptodactylus melanonotus could show up? They aren't particulary habitat picky and can occur in degraded agricultural areas if there is some water.

BTW and totally OT - In thinking about this topic I accidently googled this CD. Anyone have this recording Frog Calls (http://www.folkways.si.edu/albumdetails ... temid=2421) narrated by Charles Bogert? It has an interesting variety of species from both sides of the border.

User avatar
Cole Grover
Posts: 745
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 9:06 am
Location: Montana

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by Cole Grover »

chrish wrote:Annulata and polyzona do intergrade. Milksnakes just get bigger as you go south in the lowlands of the east coast. I think in the lowlands all the way down into the Yucatan you are dealing with the same species. What's happening in the uplands and the west coast is a different story.
Chris,

I'm not doubting you here, and I suspect that they do, but have you seen any intergrades? Photos? Williams considered several specimens from the Gulf coastal lowlands to be intergrades, but also expressed some doubt. I've seen plenty of photos from both ends of the spectrum, but few "tweeners", so to speak. Having never been to that part of the country myself, I've got no first-hand experience.

-Cole

User avatar
intermedius
Posts: 481
Joined: March 22nd, 2012, 6:19 pm

Re: Possible Country Records for the US

Post by intermedius »

I would highly think that there is an intergrade section between Clades with the population of milks in Cochise County because specimens are similar to both celanops and sinaloae. Plus sinaloae makes it up to a few km south of Benjamin Hill, so I have no doubt that Cochise populations are intergraded, or just a new subspecies. Also, I would say that boas could easily be found in the lower and more wet regions of Santa Cruz County, AZ or on the Indian reservations like Chris talked about.

This may also be the exact opposite, but what about lower Mexican records for mainly U.S endemics, like that old record of Atrox from Oaxaca. Also, what about Micruroides euryxanthus from Texas (Roze 1996) and M. euryxanthus australis from Arizona. Also, I would wonder if Molossus nigrescens has influence in the U.S, or if Molossus oaxacus can reach Tehuantepic or into the city of Oaxaca.

Saludos,

Justin

Post Reply