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Myriopholis longicauda

Myriopholis longicauda.jpeg

Range: Somalia and Kenya (?) south to Botswana and South Africa


Sometimes referred to as the Tana worm snake but more often know as the long-tailed threadsnake per the Latin name. This is an impressively widespread species compared to others in the genus, being recorded from southern coastal Somalia, Kenya, and Tanzania (though some of these records may instead represent M. blanfordi) all the way down the coast to Mozambique and northeastern South Africa, and inland into Zambia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe. It may yet be found also in Malawi and Eswatini. It grows to 25 cm long, bearint a short cylindrical but somewhat more elongate head than the rest of the genus that is barely wider than the neck, and a notable longer tail than its relatives ending bluntly but with a short spine at the tip. Dorsal scale count is between 300-550, midbody scale row count 14 and 12 on the tail. Coloration is generally dark brownish to almost purple dorsally, paler ventrally. This species can be separated from its relatives by its longer tail and smaller apical spine, and several internal structural differences.


Habitat: Coastal or lowland moist savannahs, often under logs, leaf litter, or in termite mounds.


Diet: Feeds on small soft-bodied invertebrates such as ant and termite larvae.


Lifespan and reproduction: Lifespan unknown, likely under 7 years. Oviparous, lays 2+ elongate cylindrical eggs.



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