The genus Atractus includes 146 species of cryptozoic snakes occurring from Panama to northeastern Argentina. Here, a molecular phylogeny of this genus is presented, which encompasses 29% (= 42; six are included here for the first time) of the species currently recognized. Morphological and phylogenetic support is found for three new species of ground snakes, which are described here based on their unique combination of molecular, meristic, and color pattern characteristics. The name A. arangoi Prado, 1939 is revalidated for a Colombian snake species previously subsumed under A. major Boulenger, 1894 based on new material collected in Ecuador. Reidentifications are provided for Atractus voucher specimens and se-quences deposited in GenBank. With these changes, the number of Atractus reported in Ecuador increases from 27 to 31 species. Finally, attention is given to the importance of using a biogeographical framework that includes molecular data and a comprehensive geographic sampling when proposing species limits in complex taxonomic groups.