THE UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS SCIENCE BULLETIN Vol. XLVIII Paces 297-305 May 16, 1969 No. 10 A New Family of African Gymnophiona 1 Edward H. Taylor 2 In a recent publication (Taylor, 1968), I presented a taxonomic revision of the order Gymnophiona, there recognizing three families. At the same time I suggested that there was a strong possibility that a fourth family should be recognized to include Scolecomorphus , an African genus comprising six known species. This opinion was based on preserved alcoholic material and in part on the literature dealing with the genus. However, at that time 1 had not personally examined a skull of a single species of the genus. The unusual anatomy of the skull had been studied by C. (i. S. de Villiers (1938), who reported on some of the cranial features. In 1956, I). J. Brand made a second exhaustive study of the cranial anatomy of Scolecomorphus uluguruensis and compared it to skulls of other caecilian genera. Neither author was concerned primarily with taxonomy. In my recent anatomical studies I have had available the skulls ot two species of this genus — Scolecomorphus vittatus and 5. \ir\ii. These have confirmed my belief that it is imperative to recognize the lamiK Scoleco-morphidac as a fourth family ot the Gymnophiona, and it is here described. Family Scolecomorphidae l.im. now (Figs. 1-5) The type genus of the Scolecomorphidae is Scolecomorphus Boulenger (1883), a genus with six recognized species, all African in distribution, being known in Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and the "Cameroons." The general characteristics .tie: primaries, so tar as known. 120-154; no secondary folds; a terminal unsegmented "shield"; no scales present; splenial teeth absent; eyes degenerate, under bone, without orbit (or drawn forward into tentacular open groove by tentacle); tentacle with an external sub globular swelling, partly surrounded by a groove, through which the extrusi-ble part of tentacle is extended; male penis bears numerous spines of variable 'This work was pursued under a National Scienc< Foundation Grant, No. I I "Research Associate. University of Kansas Museum ol Natural History.