Overview

Brief Summary

Coastal or northern rubber boa (Charina bottae)

The coastal rubber boa (Charina bottae) is a primitive snake in the boa family (Boidae) and has retained the club-like tail of its Erycine ancestors. The name Charina is from the Greek for graceful or delightful, and the name bottae honors Dr. Paolo E. Botta, an Italian ship's surgeon, explorer and naturalist.

The adult boa is 15-33 in (840 mm) long; newborns are typically 7.5-9 in (230 mm) long. The skin is often loose and wrinkled and consists of small, smooth. shiny scales, giving the snake a rubber-like look and texture. Colours are typically tan to dark brown with a lighter ventral surface but may be olive-green, yellow or orange. Newborns often appear pink and slightly transparent but darken with age. The boa has small eyes with vertically elliptical pupils and a short, blunt head, no wider than the body. The short, blunt tail closely resembles the shape of the head.

The rubber boa is the most northerly boa. It is native to much of the western USA, from the Pacific Coast east to western Utah and Montana, south to the San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains east of Los Angeles in California and north to southern British Columbia with an established population around Radium Hot Springs [3]. Distribution is most spotty at the southern and eastern fringes of the range.It occurs from near sea level to @ 3,050 m (10,000 ft) (4,5). There have been rare sightings in Colorado and Alberta. The boa inhabits various habitat types from grassland, grassy savannas, meadows and patchy chaparral to deciduous and conifer forests and woodlands, forest clearings and high alpine settings. It usually lives near water, but also lives in riparian zones in arid canyons and sagebrush in some areas (5,8-10). Generally this snake is found in or under rotting logs or stumps, under rocks or in crevices, or under leaf litter, the bark of dead fallen trees or in burrows. It is less tolerant of higher temperatures than other snake species and cannot inhabit areas that are too hot and dry. It can live in areas that are quite cold, but prefers areas that provide adequate warmth, moisture and prey. It is thought to maintain a relatively small home range as many individuals are often captured in the same area year after year, but individuals may occasionally migrate due to competition lack of prey, or other pressures. Juvenile dispersal is not considered a migration.

Rubber boas are considered one of the most docile of the boa species and are often used to help people overcome their fear of snakes [1] . They never strike at or bite a human, but release a potent musk from their vent if they feel threatened. They are primarily nocturnal and probably crepuscular (active at dawn and dusk). Due to the temperature of the habitat, they hibernate during winter months in underground dens. They are very adaptable snake, being good climbers, burrowers and swimmers.Activity occurs mostly at night or dusk but also commonly occurs in daytime during mild cloudy weather. Most activity occurs from March to November.

The boas feed on young voles, mice, etc. When they encounter nestling mammals, they try to consume the entire litter if possible and fend off the mother with their tail, which often has extensive scarring. They also prey on snakes and lizards and their eggs and young and small birds and bats. They generally kills their prey by constriction prior to ingestion. Their predators are varied. Threatened boas curl into a ball, bury their head inside and expose their tail to mimic their head. This is thought to be a primary defense technique against predators, it is doubtful that this behavior is effective against large predators, such as raptors, coyotes, raccoons and cats. The best defence of rubber boas is their secretive nature.

Rubber boas are ovoviviparous and can have 2-8 young a year, but many females only reproduce every 4 years. Mating occurs soon after reemergence from hibernation in spring and young are born from August-November that year [2]. The boa lives up to 26.5 years in captivity.

The total adult population size probably exceeds 10,000 and perhaps 100,000. This snake is secretive, but under appropriate temperature and moisture conditions it is locally quite common (8,9). It seems to be secure, due to its widespread occurrence in many areas that still provide suitable habitat. It is moderately vulnerable, but is not threatened in most of its range. Its Red List Category is Least Concern, due to the wide range, presumed large population and as it is unlikely to be declining fast enough for listing in a more threatened category. Its Global Short Term Trend is relatively stable due to the extent of occurrence, area of occupnacy, number of subpopulations and population size. The populations in southern California may be declining. Many populations are appropriately protected and managed in national and state parks and other protected areas.

Collins (13) did not recognize any subspecies. Stebbins (15) recognized 3 subspecies (bottae, utahensis, and umbratica). Stewart (4) recognized two subspecies (bottae and umbratica), with populations from Mt. Pinos and the Tehachapi Mountains, California, as intergrades between these subspecies. The southern rubber boa is sometimes classified as a subspecies (Charina bottae umbratica) (5). Nussbaum and Hoyer (12) showed that the subspecies utahensis is indistiguishable from subspecies bottae and regarded the concept "umbratica" as meaningless. Other scientists classify it as a separate species (Charina umbratica) from a few disjunct areas in the mountains of southern California (6,7,14,16,17). Rodriguez-Robles et al. (6) used mtDNA data to conclude that "umbratica is a genetically cohesive, allopatric taxon that is morphologically diagnosable" and "is an independent evolutionary unit that should be recognized as a distinct species, Charina umbratica." They acknowledged that a mixture of bottae and umbratica traits exists in populations in the Tehachapi Mountains and Mount Pinos, but interpreted this as persistent ancestral polymorphisms. They found no support to recognize utahensis as a valid taxon. The southern rubber boa is reportedly declining due to habitat loss and degradation (resort development, smog, logging, wood gathering) (11).
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Olingo

Supplier: Olingo

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Distribution

Range Description

This species occurs in the west of the United States and in southwestern Canada. Its range extends from southern British Columbia south to west-central California, montane southern California (San Bernardino Mountains, San Jacinto Mountains, Tehachapi Mountains, Mt. Pinos, Mt. Abel), central Nevada and southern Utah, from the Pacific coast east to north-central Wyoming and western Montana, from near sea level to about 3,050 m (10,000 feet) (Stewart 1977, Stebbins 2003). Its distribution is spotty in many areas, particularly at the southern and eastern fringes of the range. Disjunct populations in the mountains of southern California have been proposed as a distinct species, C. umbratica (Rodriguez-Robles et al. 2001).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Range: (200,000 to >2,500,000 square km (about 80,000 to >1,000,000 square miles)) The range extends from southern British Columbia south to west-central California, central Nevada, and southern Utah, from the Pacific coast east to north-central Wyoming and western Montana, from near sea level to about 3,050 meters (10,000 feet) (Stewart 1977, Stebbins 2003). Distribution is spotty in many areas, particularly at the southern and eastern fringes of the range. Disjunct Charina populations in the mountains of southern California are now recognized as a distinct species, C. umbratica (Rodriguez-Robles et al. 2001, Crother 2008).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Continent: North-America
Distribution: USA (Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho, W Montana, Nevada, N Utah, W Wyoming),  Canada (S British Columbia)  
Type locality: California; restricted to Coast Range, opposite Menterey by SCHMIDT (1953)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Peter Uetz

Source: The Reptile Database

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Size

Length: 84 cm

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Type Information

Holotype for Charina bottae
Catalog Number: USNM 15524
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles
Preparation: Ethanol
Locality: Point Reyes, Marin, California, United States, North America
  • Holotype: Cope, E. D. 1888. Proc. U. S. Nat. Mus. 11 (689): 88, plate 36, figure 2a-f.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Holotype for Charina bottae
Catalog Number: USNM 7299
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles
Preparation: Ethanol
Year Collected: 1841
Locality: Puget Sound, Locality In Multiple Counties, Washington, United States, North America
  • Holotype: Baird, S. F. & Girard, C. 1852. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia. 6: 176.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Holotype for Charina bottae
Catalog Number: USNM 4492
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles
Preparation: Ethanol
Year Collected: 1841
Locality: Puget Sound, Locality In Multiple Counties, Washington, United States, North America
  • Holotype: Baird, S. F. & Girard, C. 1852. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia. 6: 176.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Amphibians & Reptiles

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Habitat includes woodlands, forest clearings, patchy chaparral, meadows, and grassy savannas, generally not far from water; also riparian zones in arid canyons and sagebrush in some areas (Nussbaum et al. 1983, Brown et al. 1995, St. John 2002, Stebbins 2003). Generally this snake is found in or under rotting logs or stumps, under rocks or in crevices, or under the bark of dead fallen trees.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Habitat includes woodlands, forest clearings, patchy chaparral, meadows, and grassy savannas, generally not far from water; also riparian zones in arid canyons and sagebrush in some areas (Nussbaum et al. 1983, Brown et al. 1995, St. John 2002, Stebbins 2003). Generally this snake is found in or under rotting logs or stumps, under rocks or in crevices, or under the bark of dead fallen trees.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Migration

Non-Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species do not make significant seasonal migrations. Juvenile dispersal is not considered a migration.

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Comments: Diet includes mice, shrews, lizards, lizard eggs, snakes, and small birds. This snake generally kills its prey by constriction prior to ingestion.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population Biology

Number of Occurrences

Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.

Estimated Number of Occurrences: > 300

Comments: This species is represented by many occurrences or subpopulations. For example, Stewart (1977) mapped over 200 collection sites rangewide.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Abundance

10,000 - 1,000,000 individuals

Comments: Total adult population size is unknown but surely exceeds 10,000 and probably exceeds 100,000. This snake is secretive, but under appropriate temperature and moisture conditions it becomes evident that it is locally quite common (Nussbaum et al. 1983, Brown et al. 1995).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Comments: Activity occurs mostly at night or dusk but also commonly occurs in daytime during mild cloudy weather. Most activity occurs from March to November.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Expectancy

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 26.5 years (captivity)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Joao Pedro de Magalhaes

Source: AnAge

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction

Live-bearing; 2-8 young are born August-November.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2007

Assessor/s
Hammerson, G.A.

Reviewer/s
Cox, N., Chanson, J.S. & Stuart, S.N. (Global Reptile Assessment Coordinating Team)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Least Concern in view of the wide range, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough for listing in a more threatened category.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: N4 - Apparently Secure

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N5 - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

Reasons: Widespread in western North America; secure due to widespread occurrence in many areas that still provide suitable habitat.

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Moderately vulnerable

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
This species is represented by many occurrences or subpopulations. For example, Stewart (1977) mapped over 200 collection sites rangewide. The total adult population size is unknown but surely exceeds 10,000 and probably exceeds 100,000. This snake is secretive, but under appropriate temperature and moisture conditions it becomes evident that it is locally quite common (Nussbaum et al. 1983, Brown et al. 1995). Overall, the extent of occurrence, area of occupancy, number of subpopulations, and population size are probably relatively stable. The populations in southern California may be declining but few reliable data are available.

Population Trend
Stable
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Short Term Trend: Relatively stable (=10% change)

Comments: Overall, the extent of occurrence, area of occupnacy, number of subpopulations, and population size probably are relatively stable.

Global Long Term Trend: Increase of 10-25% to decline of 30%

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
The species is not threatened in most of the range. The subspecies C. b. umbratica of southern California is reportedly declining due to habitat loss and degradation (resort development, smog, logging, wood gathering) (California Department of Fish and Game 1990).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Degree of Threat: Medium

Comments: The species is not threatened in most of the range.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Many occurrences are in national and state parks and other protected areas. It is listed on CITES Appendix II.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Protection: Many to very many (13 to >40) occurrences appropriately protected and managed

Comments: Many occurrences are in national and state parks and other protected areas.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Rubber boa

The rubber boa (Charina bottae) is a snake in the family Boidae that is native to the Western United States and British Columbia, Canada.

Taxonomy[edit]

The name Charina is from the Greek for graceful or delightful, and the name bottae honors Dr. Paolo E. Botta, an Italian ship's surgeon, explorer and naturalist. The Boidae family consists of the nonvenomous snakes commonly called boas and consists of 43 species. The genus Charina consists of four species, three of which are found in North America, and one species found in Africa. It is sometimes also known as the coastal rubber boa or the northern rubber boa and is not to be confused with the southern rubber boa (Charina umbratica). There is debate on whether the southern rubber boa should be a separate species or a subspecies (Charina bottae umbratica). The only other boa species found in the United States is the rosy boa (Lichanura trivirgata).

Identification[edit]

Rubber boas are one of the smaller boa species, adults can be anywhere from 38 to 84 centimetres (1.25 to 2.76 ft) long; newborns are typically 19 to 23 centimetres (7.5 to 9.1 in) long. The common name is derived from their skin which is often loose and wrinkled and consists of small scales that are smooth and shiny, these characteristics give the snakes a rubber like look and texture. Colors are typically tan to dark brown with a lighter ventral surface but sometimes olive-green, yellow, or orange. Newborns often appear pink and slightly transparent but darken with age. Rubber boas have small eyes with vertically elliptical pupils and short blunt heads that are no wider than the body. One of the most identifiable characteristics of rubber boas is their short blunt tails that closely resemble the shape of their head. Rubber boas appear quite different visually than any other species that share the same range (except maybe for the southern rubber boa) and thus are usually easy to identify.

Distribution[edit]

Rubber boas are the most northerly of boa species. The distribution of rubber boas covers a large portion of the western United States, stretching from the Pacific Coast east to western Utah and Montana, as far south as the San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains east of Los Angeles in California, and as far north as southern British Columbia. There have also been rare sightings in Colorado and Alberta in addition to the states/provinces that they are known to thrive in (California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, and extending to its northern most range in British Columbia, this is also the highest latitude of any Boa, that is to say the closest point to either pole for a Boa.[1]

Habitat[edit]

Rubber boas have been known to inhabit a wide variety of habitat types from grassland, meadows and chaparral to deciduous and conifer forests, to high alpine settings. They can be found at elevations anywhere from sea level to over 10,000 feet (3,000 m). They are not as tolerant of higher temperatures as other snake species and cannot inhabit areas that are too hot and dry, but can live in areas that are surprisingly cold, especially for a snake. Rubber Boas also spend a large amount of time under shelter (rocks, logs, leaf litter, burrows, etc.) and thus must live in habitats that can provide this, as well as adequate warmth, moisture, and prey. It is also thought that Rubber Boas maintain a relatively small home range as many individuals are often captured in the same vicinity year after year, although individuals may occasionally migrate due to competition, lack of prey, or other pressures.

Behavior[edit]

Characteristics of rubber boas behavior also set them apart from other snakes. Rubber boas are considered one of the most docile of the boa species and are often used to help people overcome their fear of snakes.[2] Rubber Boas are known to never strike at or bite a human under any circumstances but will release a potent musk from their vent if they feel threatened. They are primarily nocturnal and likely crepuscular (active during dawn and dusk) which partially contributes to how rarely they are encountered. Because of the temperate regions they inhabit Rubber Boas hibernate during the winter months in underground dens. Hunting – Rubber boas primarily feed on young mammals such as shrews, voles, mice, etc. When nestling mammals are encountered they will try to consume the entire litter if possible and fend off the mother with their tail, this is why individuals will often have extensive scarring on their tails. Rubber boas have also been known to prey on snake eggs, lizard eggs, lizards, young birds, young bats, and there have even been instances of them eating other snakes. Predation – Rubber boas can be preyed upon by almost any reasonably sized predator in their habitat. When threatened, Rubber Boas will curl into a ball, bury their head inside, and expose their tail to mimic their head. While this is thought to be a primary defense technique against predators, it is doubtful that this behavior is effective in most cases being that many predators are too large (raptors, coyotes, raccoons, cats, etc.). In reality the best defense of rubber boas is their secretive nature.

Reproduction[edit]

Rubber boas are ovoviviparous (give birth to live young) and can have up to 9 young per year, but many females will only reproduce every four years. Mating occurs shortly after reemergence from hibernation in the spring and young are born anywhere from August to November later that year.[3]

Other[edit]

The southern rubber boa is found only in a few disjunct areas of California.

The rubber boa is a primitive snake compared to its much larger relatives native to Latin America, which include the boa constrictor, emerald tree boa, and green anaconda. The rubber boa has retained the club-like tail of its Erycine ancestors.

An adult rubber boa
A young rubber boa in Oregon, shown with a US nickel for size comparison.

It is an extremely adaptable snake. It is a good climber, burrower, and even swimmer.

The rubber boa has established populations around: Pemberton, British Columbia,[4] Williams Lake, British Columbia,[5] Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia.[6]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "All About The Rubber Boa Charina bottae, Natural History (and other info) of the Rubber Boa". All About The Rubber Boa Charina bottae. October 8, 2009. Retrieved October 8, 2009. 
  3. ^ "California Reptiles and Amphibians, Northern Rubber Boa". California Reptiles & Amphibians. February 23, 2009. Retrieved February 23, 2009. 
  4. ^ [2]
  5. ^ [3]
  6. ^ "Radium Hot Springs’ Remarkable Rubber Boa: A Species of Special Concern". Parks Canada Agency. October 4, 2004. Retrieved June 12, 2007. 

References[edit]

Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: Nussbaum and Hoyer (1974) showed that subspecies utahensis is indistiguishable from subspecies bottae, and they regarded the concept "umbratica" as meaningless; Collins (1990) apparently agreed with this view and did not recognize any subspecies. In contrast, Erwin (1974) proposed that subspecies umbratica warrants species status; this suggestion did not gain the support of other herpetologists. Stewart (1977) recognized two subspecies (bottae and umbratica) and, pending further study, regarded populations from Mt. Pinos and the Tehachapi Mountains, California, as intergrades between these two subspecies. Stebbins (1985) continued to recognize three subspecies (bottae, utahensis, and umbratica). Rodriguez-Robles et al. (2001) used mtDNA data to examine phylogeography of C. bottae and concluded that "C. b. umbratica is a genetically cohesive, allopatric taxon that is morphologically diagnosable" [using a suite of traits] and that "it is an independent evolutionary unit that should be recognized as a distinct species, Charina umbratica." The authors acknowledged that a mixture of bottae and umbratica traits exists in populations in the Tehachapi Mountains and Mount Pinos, but they interpreted this as persistent ancestral polymorphisms. They also found no support for recognizing utahensis as a valid taxon. Crother et al. (2003) listed C. umbratica as a species whereas Stebbins (2003) mentioned the proposal but did not adopt the split. In this database we follow Crother (2008) and Collins and Taggart (2009) and recognize Charina umbratica as a distinct species.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!