Given the absence of a current source on snake diversity and nomenclature and the expressed global need to understand better the diversity of our biota, we think that a catalogue of the world snake fauna complete with synonymies at the familial, generic, and specific levels is essential. We provide that here beginning with publication of the first volume. This compendium will facilitate comparative studies on the ecology, genetics, and behavior of snakes and, we hope, contribute to their conservation. At the very least, this work, when completed, will provide a readily available reference to the current taxonomic statuses and geographic distributions of snakes on a global scale. No comprehensive, up-to-date catalogue of snake species exists, and it is obvious that a detailed and inclusive treatment is long overdue. Snake Species of the World provides a comprehensive treatment of 31 families, 450 genera, and more than 2500 species of living snakes. The magnitude of the compilation requires publication in several volumes. This volume, the first of three, covers 682 species. A primary goal of this synthesis is to provide interested readers with a means for tracking scientific names that have been applied to a snake and determining the currently accepted name of that species. A secondary goal is to alert those interested in snakes as research subjects that in general many species are poorly known, that some have limited distributions, and that several are characterized by taxonomic problems.
Additional publication details
Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference. v. 1