Originally Posted by MrsTim
Very interesting and informative, wish there were more threads like this... l wonder if other species that eat toads can retain the poison - maybe hognose or grass snakes?
At last half of the 26 or so species of Rhabdophis
have nuchal glands just like R. tigrinus
and R. subminiatus
and so likely also sequester toxins also. At least one species has the glands running all the way down the body, not just in the neck.
There is a monotypic genus, Balanophis ceylonensis
, which has recently been assigned to Rhabdophis
, that also is known to be poisonous, as are some species of Macropisthodon
- which also were assigned to Rhabdophis
by implication to avoid paraphyly.
There is some discussion as to whether certain Thamnophis
also can be poisonous, it seems some can possibly sequester toxins of Taricha
newts, which are themselves quite toxic. But in the New World there is another species that is possibly the most poisonous snake of all - Erythrolamprus epinephalus
, which sequester toxins from Atelopus
Harlequin toads, Rhinella
Marine toads and even Dendrobatids including the most toxic frog of them all - Phyllobates terribilis
, according to the late Gavin Brink.