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Natural UAE

Wadi racer (Coluber rhodorachis)

The wadi racer (Coluber rhodorachis ) is similar to the sand snake in appearance, but grows only to 130 cms. It has a long and slender body with a very long tail and it can move at incredible speed. It displays considerable colour variations depending on the habitat which it occupies. Although it is confined to the rocky areas of the United Arab Emirates, it can occur in regions bordering on to sandy habitats, where its colour pattern will adapt accordingly, ranging from uniformly sand-coloured to dark grey with heavy black speckling that can give it an almost banded appearance. In all colour phases of the wadi racer, the dark markings become indistinct towards the tail, which is usually olive-green to brown in hue. It completely lacks the black and white streaked face mask of the sand snake which makes separation from this species relatively easy. Its favoured habitat is a wadi with running water, where it is active by day or at dusk, feeding, like most of the other snakes, on other reptiles, small mammals and birds, but also preying on wadi fish and toads, the latter being pursued in the water.

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