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Epictia guayaquilensis

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Range: Near Guayaquil, coastal Ecuador


The Guayaquil blind snake is currently one of the rarest snakes on the planet by record, with the species only known for certain from the holotype collection in western Ecuador (photos of which are all under reserved copyright) and a single questionable iNaturalist record still in contest. It can grow to at least 17 cm in length, with a slender cylindric build and a rounded, slightly flattened head. The tail is relatively short and blunt-ended, lacking the spine commonly seen in the genus. Dorsal scale count is 213 (may go higher if more specimens are recorded), scale row count 14 reduced to 10 caudally. Coloration is a uniform medium to deep brown, slightly paler ventrally and on the snout and tail tip. It is separated from its closest relatives by the lack of a caudal spine, relatively uniform coloration both dorsally and ventrally, and higher scale counts (over 200 dorsally, and 20 subcaudal scales).


Habitat: unknown, no description given in the type paper or in subsequent references found.


Prey: likely small soft-bodied invertebrates such as ant and termite larvae.


Lifespan and reproduction: lifespan unknown, likely under 10 years. Oviparous.


Sources: Miranda, B. R. O., & Peters, G. (2008). Eine Neue Schlankblindschlange (Serpentes: Leptotyphlopidae) aus Ecuador. Mitteilungen Aus Dem Museum Für Naturkunde in Berlin. Zoologisches Museum Und Institut Für Spezielle Zoologie (Berlin), 46(2), 439–441.

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