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A new species of bent-toed gecko found at Agasthyamalai

  • Category
    Ecology and Environment
  • Published
    27th Aug, 2022

Context

A group of researchers has discovered a new species of bent-toed gecko from Agasthyamalai hills in the Western Ghats.

About

About the Species:

  • Scientific name: Cyrtodactylus aravindi.
  • The species has been given the common name Aravind’s ground gecko after noted malacologist N.A. Aravind.
  • It has been described based on its distinctness in the morphological and molecular DNA data.
  • It has so far been found only at two locations, Muppanddal and Thuckalay, in Kanyakumari district falling within the Agasthyamalai biosphere reserve in Tamil Nadu.

Agasthyamalai Biosphere Reserve (ABR)

  • Located in the Western Ghats
  • The Agasthyamalai Biosphere Reserve (ABR) was established in 2001 and straddles the border of Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram Districts in Kerala and Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari Districts in Tamil Nadu, South India at the southern end of the Western Ghats. 
  • It consisting mostly of tropical forests.
  • It is also a unique genetic reservoir of cultivated plants especially cardamom, jamune, nutmeg, pepper and plantain.
  • Agastyamalai is also home to the Kanikaran, one of the oldest surviving ancient tribes in the world.
  • Wildlife Sanctuary:
    • Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve (TN),
    • Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary
    • Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary,
    • Shenduruny Wildlife Sanctuary
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