Erythrolamprus cursor Lacépède, 1789

Martinique ground snake, Lacépède's ground snake, Martinique racer



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Liophis cursor Lacépède, 1789; Coluber cursor Lacépède, 1789; Dromicus cursor Lacépède, 1789


Conservation Status


Rediscovered in 1962

Last record: c.1962 (Day, 1981); 1968 (Caut & Jowers, 2015)

IUCN RedList status: Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct)



Martinique & Diamond Rock (=Rocher du Diamant), Martinique Bank, Lesser Antilles


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Lacepède, B. G. E. (1789). Histoire Naturelle des Quadrupèdes Ovipares et de Serpens. Vol.2. lmprimerie du Roi, Hôtel de Thou, Paris. 671 pp.


Other references:

Arlington, J. and Henderson, R. W. (2004). Communal nesting site in the snake Liophis juliae in Dominica, West Indies. Caribbean Journal of Science 40: 263-265.

Caut, Stephane and Jowers, Michael J. (2015). Is the Martinique ground snake Erythrolamprus cursor extinct? Oryx. DOI:

Day, David. (1981). The Doomsday Book of Animals: A Natural History of Vanished Species. New York, N.Y.: The Viking Press.

Dewynter, M., Daltry, J. C. and Powell, R. (2016). Erythrolamprus cursor. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T12079A71739671. Downloaded on 17 December 2016.

Dixon, J. R. (1981). The neotropical colubrid snake genus Liophis: the eastern Caribbean complex. Copeia 1981(2): 296-304

Dixon, James R. 1989. A key and checklist to the neotropical snake genus Liophis with country lists and maps. Smithsonian Herp. Inf. Serv. (79): 1-40.

Garman, S. 1887. On West Indian reptiles in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Cambridge, Mass. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 24: 278-286.

Grazziotin, Felipe G.; Hussam Zaher, Robert W. Murphy, Gustavo Scrocchi, Marco A. Benavides, Ya-Ping 2012. Molecular phylogeny of the New World Dipsadidae (Serpentes: Colubroidea): a reappraisal. Cladistics DOI: 10.1111/j.1096-0031.2012.00393.x

Henderson R W & Bourgeois, R.W. 1993. Notes on the Diets of West Indian Liophis (Serpentes: Colubridae). Carib. J. Sci. 29 (3-4): 253-254.

Jowers, Michael J., Caut, Stephane, Garcia-Mudarra, Juan Luis, Alasaad, Samer and Ineich, Ivan. (2013). Molecular Phylogenetics of the Possibly Extinct Martinique Ground Snake. Herpetologica 69(2): 227-236.

Lazell, J. D. (1967). Wiederentdeckung von zwei angeblich ausgestorbenen Schlangenarten der westindischen Inseln. Salamandra 3: 91-97.

Maglio, Vincent J. 1970. West Indian Xenodontine colubrid snakes: Their probable origin, phylogeny, and zoogeography. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 141 (1): 1-54.

Moreau de Jonnes, A. (1818). Monographie de la Couleuvre couresse des Antilles Coluber cursor de Lacépède. Journal de Physique 87: 193-200.

Powell, Robert and Henderson, Robert W. (2012). Island lists of West Indian amphibians and reptiles. Bulletin of the Florida Museum of Natural History 51(2): 85-166. [considers this taxon possibly extinct]

Powell, R., R. W. Henderson, K. Adler, And H. A. Dundee. 1996. An annotated checklist of West Indian amphibians and reptiles. In R. Powell and R. W. Henderson (eds.), Contributions to West Indian Herpetology: A Tribute to Albert Schwartz, p.51-93. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, Ithaca (New York). Contributions to Herpetology, volume 12.

Regalado, Pedro Galán. (2015). Los Anfibios y Reptiles Extinguidos: Herpetofauna Desaparecida Desde el Año 1500. Monografías de la Universidade da Coruña 155: 1-509.

Schlegel, H. 1837. Essai sur la physionomie des serpens. Partie Générale: xxviii +251 S. + Partie Descriptive: 606 S. + xvi. La Haye (J. Kips, J. HZ. et W. P. van Stockum)

Schwartz, A. & Henderson,R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, 720 pp.

Shaw, G. 1802. General Zoology, or Systematic Natural History. Vol.3, part 2. G. Kearsley, Thomas Davison, London: 313-615.

Wallach, Van; Kenneth L. Williams , Jeff Boundy 2014. Snakes of the World: A Catalogue of Living and Extinct Species. Taylor and Francis, CRC Press, 1237 pp.


<< Back to the Ophidia (Serpentes) (Snakes) database