new snake species for the Netherlands

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Re: new snake species for the Netherlands

Postby Frédéric Seyffarth » Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:33 pm

Please Jeroen, excuse me for my misunderstanding, i saw what you wrote but i found nowhere in this topic a clue that when you wrote
didn't know these were catenifer (again)
it was about a taxonomic change. :? I was just thinking that perhaps it would be good for those who don't know well exotics species to help with some precisions.
As i wasn't aware of this new taxonomic arrangement, I would be very interested if you can add some references about it please.
Thanks :)
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Re: new snake species for the Netherlands

Postby Jeroen Speybroeck » Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:01 pm

Frédéric Seyffarth wrote:Please Jeroen, excuse me for my misunderstanding, i saw what you wrote but i found nowhere in this topic a clue that when you wrote
didn't know these were catenifer (again)
it was about a taxonomic change. :? I was just thinking that perhaps it would be good for those who don't know well exotics species to help with some precisions.
As i wasn't aware of this new taxonomic arrangement, I would be very interested if you can add some references about it please.
Thanks :)


Certainly no apologies needed. I was just as surprised as you are. However, I am not able to find the source straight away, so maybe the change didn't happen after all. Anyone who's up to speed?
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Re: new snake species for the Netherlands

Postby Jeroen Speybroeck » Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:12 pm

I now see it is probably a mistake from the site Mario posted. The other resources I checked also had it wrong at times but Bobby's link is usually rather good with this stuff. So, in the end, it's me who has to apologize...
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Re: new snake species for the Netherlands

Postby Herman Bronsgeest » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:22 pm

Hello, I am new to this forum, and this is my first reply. So here I go.

Last year, I tried to find one of these "Bull Snakes", as I live nearby and know the area well. I gave up on this, after several fruitless attempts, because the ticks and horse flies were driving me nuts. I haven't seen a single snake. However, I do have some thoughts about the snakes pictured above, that I'd like to share.

As already mentioned above, the snake pictured by Noël Aarts at Naturetoday.com is definately not a Bull Snake (Pituophis catenifer sayi). It belongs to a different species, called the Northern Pine Snake (Pituophis melanoleucus melanoleucus). This is also true, for the snake pictured by Peter Vools and Natalia van Gilst, at Waarneming.nl (23-04-2016). Both are Northern Pine Snakes, not Bull Snakes.

However, the snake pictured by Fennie Steenhuis at Waarneming.nl (26-07-2014), actually is a Bull Snake, indeed. To me, it looks like a variant from the north eastern part of the species' range, but nothing like the so called Kankakee Bulls, coming from the sand hill prairies of Illinois and Indiana, the only northern Bulls occasionally available as pets on the European market (albeit rarely). A remarkable find, to say the least.

As for the other two snakes, pictured by Wiebe Nijlunsing (04-08-2016) and by J.W. van Dijk (14-05-2017) at Waarneming.nl, those are a different story. During my time as a snake enthusiast, I have seen my fair share of Pituophis (sub)species. Also, quite a few Pituophis hybrids, mostly the so called "Pin Bulls", which are a man made cross between the Bull Snake and the Northern Pine Snake. The snakes pictured by Nijlunsing and Van Dijk look exactly like those "Pin Bull" hybrids, and I'm pretty sure that's what they are.

So this whole situation doesn't really compute like just another guy who released a random bunch of snakes, just because he couldn't get rid of them in a normal fashion. It looks and feels like a deliberate attempt to an introduction, at least to me. Regardless, I don't believe that this "population" will persevere in the long run, as Dutch summers typically are short, cold, and wet. Last year, we only had about two weeks of resonable enough weather, as far as I remember. Bulls and Northern Pines need about seven to eight weeks of good weather for their eggs to fully develop and hatch. Those conditions haven't been met, not even once, or even close, during my entire life. So there...

Any thoughts on this? I sure would like to see them.
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