Distribution

Anomalepididae is an exclusively Neotropical family, with an apparently discontinuous distribution in central and northern South America and southern Central America. The genus Anomalepis includes four species, which range from northern

Costa Rica southward through northern Peru. Helminthophis contains three species, which are distributed from Costa Rica southward through Colombia and Venezuela. In addition, one species of this genus (H. flavoterminatus) may have been introduced onto the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius during the nineteenth century. Liotyphlops is the most speciose of the four anomalepidid genera, including three species that range from southern Costa Rica southward through Venezuela, Colombia, and Ecuador and four species that are distributed throughout southern Brazil, southeastern Paraguay, and northeastern Argentina. Finally, the genus Typhlophis includes only two species, which are distributed from central Venezuela eastward through French Guiana and southward through northeastern Brazil. T. squamosus has also been reported to be present on Trinidad, but the validity of this claim remains questionable. The altitudinal distribution of early blindsnakes is poorly known, but available data suggest that these snakes inhabit a relatively wide range of elevations, from sea level to at least 5,968 ft (1,819 m). It should be emphasized, however, that these tiny, secretive snakes inhabit areas that have relatively low human population densities. Furthermore, like other blindsnakes, anomalepidids are probably frequently transported to areas outside of their natural range through human activities (especially through the agricultural trade). Therefore, the known geographical distributions of early blindsnakes may not accurately reflect the natural or complete range of the family.

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