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My Neighbours : Birds My Neighbours : Butterflies My Neighbours : Invertebrates
My Neighbours : Trees,Plants& Flowers My Neighbours : Reptiles & Amphebians My Neighbours : Mammals




For reptile and amphibian diversity too the land of Kerala is quite unique. Of the nearly 200 reptile species recorded from Western Ghats complex 169 occur in Kerala; 9 of them are seen only in Kerala. The most awesome reptile of these forests is undoubtedly the King Cobra, the largest venomous snake in the world. Another interesting group of highly camouflaged and poisonous snakes is the pit-vipers, so called because of the presence of heat sensitive “pits” between each nostril and eye. Almost all the 65 species of lizards of the Western Ghats – from the flying lizard to the Indian Chameleon - are found in Kerala also.

Indian subcontinent has about 206 species of anurans (frogs and toads) of which 104 live in Western Ghats complex. Kerala list is about 94 of which 23 are endemics. But there has been real advancement in this field recently and according to some reports about 200 more species have been newly discovered. Perhaps the greatest discovery among all these is the discovery of a new species of frog, which has turned out be a member of a totally unknown species of a totally unknown genus of a totally unknown family of frogs.

This family which has been named ‘ Nasikabatrachidae’ appears to date back more than 200 million years to a time when Africa and India were joined in a single vast supercontinent now called Gondwanaland. About 150 million years ago that continent had broken up into chunks of land masses that included Madagascar, the Seychelles, and the Western Ghats of India. So this frog species ‘Nasikabatrachus sahydrensis’is now considered as the living fossil with its closest relative only in the Seychelles island.

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