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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Infraorder: Alethinophidia
Family: Loxocemidae
Cope, 1861
Genus: Loxocemus
Cope, 1861
Species: L. bicolor
Binomial name
Loxocemus bicolor
Cope, 1861
  • Loxocemi - Cope, 1861
  • Loxocemina - Boulenger, 1879
  • Loxoceminae - Romer, 1956
  • Loxocemidae - McDowell, 1975[1]

  • Loxocemus - Cope, 1861
  • Plastoseryx - Jan, 1862[1]

  • L[oxocemus]. bicolor - Cope, 1861
  • Plastoseryx Bronni - Jan, 1862
  • Loxocemus Sumichrasti - Bocourt, 1876
  • Loxocemus Sumichrasti - Bocourt, 1876
  • Loxocemus bicolor - Boulenger, 1896
  • Loxocemus bicolor bicolor - Woodbury & Woodbury, 1944
  • Loxocemus bicolor sumichrasti - Woodbury & Woodbury, 1944[1]
Common names: Mexican python,[2] Mexican burrowing python,[3] Mexican burrowing snake.

The Loxocemidae are a monotypic family[2] of snakes created for the monotypic genus Loxocemus[4] that contains the species L. bicolor found in Central America . No subspecies are currently recognized.[5]



Being the sole member of its family, its relation to other snakes is not known. It resembles members of the Pythonidae in several respects, but since that group is not found in the Americas, it is believed to be unrelated. According to Noonan & Chippindale (2006), it is most closely related to the pythons from the Australian/New Guinean region (Morelia and Aspidites).

Adults grow to a maximum of 1.57 m (62 in) in length.[6] On average this snake grows to roughly 91 cm (3ft). The body is stout and very muscular. The snout is shovel-shaped, with a narrow head and small eyes to facilitate burrowing. The species is described as terrestrial and semi-fossorial,[6] which makes them hard to observe and study. The color pattern is usually dark with patches of white scales, although occasionally after shedding all pigment will disappear, resulting in a white snake with only a small dark patch on its head.

Geographic range

Found along the Mexican Pacific versant at low to moderate elevations in the states of Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan, Morelos, Guerrero, Oaxaca and Chiapas. From there its range extends south through Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua to Costa Rica. The type locality given is "La Unión, San Salvador" (in El Salvador).[1]


They are found in a variety of habitats including tropical, moist, dry and forests. In Honduras and Guatemala, they also occur in dry inland vallies that drain into the Caribbean.[1]


The diet is believed to consist of rodents and lizards. It has also been observed eating iguana eggs.


They are oviparous, laying small clutches of 2-4 eggs.[6]


  • Mattison, Chris (1999). Snake. DK Publishing. ISBN 0-7894-4660-X.  

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, vol. 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. ^ a b Loxocemidae (TSN 209605). Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved on 17 August 2007.
  3. ^ Species Loxocemus bicolor at The Reptile Database. Accessed 17 August 2007.
  4. ^ Loxocemus (TSN 209606). Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved on 17 August 2007.
  5. ^ Loxocemus bicolor (TSN 209607). Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved on 17 August 2007.
  6. ^ a b c Loxocemidae at the TIGR Reptile Database. Accessed 3 November 2008.

Noonan, B. P. & Chippindale, P. T. (2006): Dispersal and vicariance: The complex evolutionary history of boid snakes. - Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 40: 347–358.

External links



Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Loxocemus bicolor (Mexian burrowing python), the only living species of familia Loxocemidae.


Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Supergroup: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Classis: Reptilia
Subclassis: Diapsida
Infraclassis: Lepidosauromorpha
Superordo: Lepidosauria
Ordo: Squamata
Subordo: Serpentes
Superfamilia: Booidea
Familia: Loxocemidae
Genus: Loxocemus


Loxocemidae Cope, 1861

Vernacular names

Deutsch: Spitzkopfpython
English: Mexican Burrowing Python
Nederlands: Spitskoppython
‪Norsk (bokmål)‬: Spisshodepyton


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