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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024



Gimlett's Reed Snake

Fig 1

Fig 2













Species : Calamaria gimletti
Maximum Size : 27 cm

Gimlett's Reed Snake inhabits lowland and montane forest. It is terrestrial in habits, remaining hidden by day beneath leaf litter. Like other reed snakes, it may be encountered at night above ground.

Its body is slender, and cylindrical in shape, with the head no wider than the body. The tail is short and rounded at the tip.

Its dorsal body scales are dark brown under natural light (purplish and iridescent under camera flashlight) and its underside is cream. There are small yellow markings on the body, typically at the nape, as well as an incomplete yellow band 1-2 cm behind the head, and another at the base of the tail.

The species is considered by some researchers to be a subspecies of Lovi's Reed Snake Calamaria lovii.

In Peninsular Malaysia, the species is widely recorded on the mainland from lowland and montane forest, as well as Pulau Aur, an island off the coast of Johor state. Das (2010) also records it from the Riau Islands of Indonesia.

In Singapore, the species was rediscovered in 2017, having not been seen in the wild for 84 years.

Figs 1 and 2 :  Example from Fraser's Hill, Peninsular Malaysia, at an elevation of 1200 metres.

References : H12

Serin Subaraj, Law Ing Sind & Noel Thomas (2017). Rediscovery of Gimlett痴 reed snake in Singapore. Singapore Biodiversity Records, National University of Singapore. 2017: 89-90.