Brazilian fossil snakes have had a rich and diverse record since the Late Cretaceous. Here, we provide an overview of the snake fossil record from Brazil, gathering all available data to reconstruct the diversity and distribution of taxa through time. Mesozoic snakes are scarce, represented by the putative ophidian Tetrapodophis amplectus, the snake Seismophis septentrionalis, and some undescribed material referred to ‘Anilioidea.' The Paleocene of São José do Itaboraí holds the richest and most-diverse Brazilian snake fauna composed of several taxa of madtsoids, ‘aniloids,' boids, ‘booids,' and caenophidians. Fossils from the Brazilian Neogene are reported for the Late Miocene of the Solimões Formation including boids, Colubroides, and an alethinophidian of uncertain relationships, Colombophis. Quaternary deposits yield a rich snake fauna represented by extant species such as boids and colubroids. The Brazilian snake fossil record is crucial for understanding issues about the early evolution of snakes and provides valuable insights into paleobiogeography, paleoenvironmental, and morphological studies.
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Vol. 51 • No. 3