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Albert Rogers Crandall's Smooth Green Snake (Opheodrys vernalis) from North Carolina
- Stuart, Bryan L., Rosado, José, Brinkman, Paul D.
- Southeastern naturalist 2014 v.13 no.4 pp. N37
- Sceloporus undulatus, snakes, zoology, Massachusetts, North Carolina
- Opheodrys vernalis (Smooth Green Snake) is documented in North Carolina by only a single specimen collected in the western part of the state by Albert Rogers Crandall and deposited in 1871 at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. Owing to a lack of additional material evidence, many authors have questioned the occurrence of the species in the state. We make the case that the museum tag on the extant Smooth Green Snake specimen was originally assigned to a Sceloporus undulatus (Eastern Fence Lizard) specimen collected by Crandall in western North Carolina, and that the tag was re-assigned between 1924 and 1941 to two Smooth Green Snake specimens. We conclude that the Harvard specimen has become disassociated from its data, and it therefore does not serve as a reliable locality record. Pending acquisition of evidence to the contrary, we recommend excluding North Carolina from the geographic range of Smooth Green Snakes.