AmphibiaWeb - Ichthyophis sendenyu


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Ichthyophis sendenyu Kamei, Wilkinson, Gower & Biju, 2009
Sendenyu striped Ichthyophis
family: Ichthyophiidae
genus: Ichthyophis
Species Description: Kamei RG, Wilkinson M, Gower DJ, Biju SD 2009 Three new species of striped Ichthyophis (Amphibia: Gymnophiona: Ichthyophiidae) from the northeast Indian states of Manipur and Nagaland. Zootaxa 2267:26-42.
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Data Deficient (DD)
National Status None
Regional Status None
conservation needs Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .


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Diagnosis: Ichthyophis sendenyu can be distinguished by the following combination of characters: distinctive arched moustache-like stripes extending between the nares and tentacular apertures and tapering toward the nares; lateral yellow stripes that are broad (ratio of midbody width to stripe width at midbody is less than 4), regular, and mostly solid, running from about the level of posterior of the disc to at least eye level on upper jaw and midway between tentacular apertures and nares on lower jaw, with a broad anterior gap expanded and sometimes visible on ventral side of collars, and connected by spurs to disc; not known to attain lengths greater than 350 mm, midbody length to midbody width ratio 21-27; maximum of 314 annular grooves, which are paler than the adjacent skin; head short and U-shaped, with the total length/head length ratio >20); TAs less than twice as far from nares than from eyes (TN/TE of less than 2); collars of similar lengths; scales present in anteriormost grooves, with 5-8 rows posteriorly on dorsum; similar numbers of splenial and dentary teeth (43-45 splenial teeth, 38-44 dentary teeth) (Kamei et al. 2009).

Description: Adult male specimen measures 305 mm in total length. Adult females measure 250-308 mm in total length. Short head, trunk and nuchal region are dorsoventrally compressed. Collar region is somewhat more massive than the head and body. Eyes lie closer to the top of the head than to the lips. Teeth are slender and strongly recurved; 39-46 premaxillary-maxillary teeth, 41-44 vomeropalatine teeth, 38-44 dentary teeth, and 43-45 splenial teeth are present. Choanae are relatively wide with the distance between them 2.5-4x greater than their width. Posterior of the tongue is strongly plicate. Girth maximal near mid-body, decreasing gradually, then tapering more abruptly over the final 20 mm of length. The ratio of total length to midbody width is 20.8. In the holotype, the first few annular grooves are incomplete midventrally, with many being offset, and some (8-9) interrupted in the disc region; on the dorsal side, the first 30 and last 15 or so annular grooves are curved anteromedially; on the ventral side, the anterior annular grooves are angulate and curve posteromedially, with the curvature decreasing gradually along the body length until annular grooves are orthoplicate by about the 45th annulus anterior to the disc. On the paratypes, many more incomplete annular grooves are present ventrally, fewer orthoplicate annular grooves (19-38) on the ventral side, anterior to the vent, and fewer anteromedially curving annular grooves on the dorsal side (14-21 anterior, 10-13 posterior). Scales are present in anteriormost grooves with five to eight rows posteriorly on the dorsum. Towards the posterior of the holotype, 7-8 rows of large scales are found in very deep pockets on the dorsum with 6-7 rows in deep pockets on the venter. On the single paratype examined, all scale pockets were shallow, and small scales were present dorsally in the collar transverse grooves; large scales were present in 5 rows per groove at the dorsal midbody; small scales were present in 3 rows per groove at the ventral midbody; posteriorly, slightly larger scales were found in 5 rows per groove dorsally, and smaller scales in 5 rows per groove on the ventral side. Around the vent, 16-18 denticulations are present. The female holotype lacks papillae on the disc, but the single male paratype has papillae on the disc. Tail may or may not be upturned towards the tip (Kamei et al. 2009).

In life, uniform bright orange-brown dorsum with narrow "moustache" stripes, yellow lateral stripes, a pale lilac-gray venter and a whitish disc. I. sendenyu has moustache-like lines curving anteriorly from the tentacular apertures to halfway between the tentacular apertures and the nares, with the line thickest near the tentacular apertures. This species also has broad, solid, relatively regular lateral yellow stripes and that run from the fourth to last annulus to the corners of the mouth, then narrow and terminate on the upper jaw at the level of the eye, and extend on the lower jaw to midway between the nares and tentacular apertures. Ventral spurs connect to the disc's anterior. The lateral yellow stripes vary in width from 3.1-5.1 mm, and are thickest at the mid-body, Annular grooves are paler than the body, especially on the venter (Kamei et al. 2009).

In preservative, dark brown dorsum with a paler gray-brown venter, and broad, solid, yellow lateral stripes that are are thickest at mid-body, running from about the fourth to last annulus to the corners of the mouth, then narrowing and terminating at about eye level on the upper jaw, while extending further along the lower jaw to midway between the nares and tentacular apertures. A wide gap in yellow striping is visible at the tip of the lower jaw, resulting in the darker area on the throat appearing mushroom-shaped. Narrow yellow mustache-like stripe extends dorsally, then curves toward the anterior from the tentacular aperture to the midpoint between the naris and tentacular aperture, with the thickest part closest to the tentacular aperture (Kamei et al. 2009).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: India

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Endemic to India. The type locality is Dhy├╝tere, New Sendenyu village, Tseminyu sub-division, Kohima District, Nagaland, at 782 m asl. Individuals were dug out from a small banana plantation on the edge of paddy fields in the vicinity of a secondary forest (Kamei et al. 2009).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
This species is fossorial; all individuals were dug out from underneath the soil (Kamei et al. 2009).

Trends and Threats
The population status and range size are not known; so far only four specimens have been collected (three females and one male) from a single locality. This species can tolerate some habitat disturbance; individuals were found in the soil of a banana plantation. However, the region is experiencing increasing deforestation and habitat degradation (Kamei et al. 2009).


Species authority: Kamei et al. (2009).

The species is named after Sendenyu village, where it was found (Kamei et al. 2009).


Kamei, R.G., Wilkinson, M., Gower, D.J. and Biju, S.D. (2009). ''Three new species of striped Ichthyophis (Amphibia: Gymnophiona: Ichthyophiidae) from the northeast Indian states of Manipur and Nagaland.'' Zootaxa, 2267, 26-42.

Originally submitted by: Stephanie Ung and Kellie Whittaker (first posted 2009-11-12)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker (2012-01-11)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2012 Ichthyophis sendenyu: Sendenyu striped Ichthyophis <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jul 21, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 21 Jul 2024.

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