The Neotropical dipsadid snake genus Atractus contains more species than any other genus of serpents. The type species for the genus, Three-lined Snakes (Atractus trilineatus), occurs in northern South America, as well as in the islands of Trinidad and Tobago. Little is known about the phylogenetic position of this fossorial snake. Here, we examine the genetic variation of this species. Phylogenetic analyses suggest that A. trilineatus is an early branch within Atractus, and is deeply divergent from all of the other 31 species within the genus included in our analyses. Populations of A. trilineatus from Trinidad and Tobago show a close genetic affinity with mainland populations from Guyana, and indicate recent vicariance following Late Pleistocene sea-level rises. Overwater dispersal events cannot be ruled out, however, especially for the colonization of Tobago. Our results add to the understanding of the complexity of the phylogeographic events in the eastern Caribbean with this ecologically constrained species.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 75 • No. 3