Prehistoric Models: Snakes

Snakes are an ancient lineage of diapsid reptiles that have been on this Earth since the time of the dinosaurs. The first snakes did have legs in the Jurassic Period and lost them by the late Cretaceous. The ancestors to snakes have been identified in the Jurassic period with limbs. To see my snake fossils click here.

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsida – Order: Squamata – Clade: Ophidia – Suborder: Serpentes


 Late Cretaceous to Holocene

Genera: Naja

Common name: Cobra

Classification: Family: Elapidae (with some exceptions)

Range: Africa and Asia

Time: Miocene to Holocene

Diet: Carnivore

Genus and species: Oxyuranus microlepidotus

Common name: Taipan

Classification: Family: Elapidae – Subfamily Hydrophiinae

Range: Australia

Time: Holocene

Diet: Carnivore

Genera: Crotalinae and Sistrurus

Common name: Rattle snake

Classification: Family: Viperidae – Subfamily Crotalinae

Range: North America

Time: Holocene

Diet: Carnivore

Genus and species: Agkistrodon piscivorus

Common name: Cottonmouth, Water Moccasin, Swamp Moccasin, Black Moccasin, and Viper

Classification: Family: Viperidae

Range: Southeast United States

Time: Holocene

Diet: Carnivore

Genus, species, and subspecies: Nerodia sipedon insularum

Common name: Lake Erie Water Snake

Classification: Family: Colubridae

Range: Small islands on the west coast of Lake Erie, North America

Time: Holocene

Diet: Carnivore

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