Saturday, December 13, 2008
THE GREAT INDIAN EGG EATER SNAKE…….. (Elachistodon westermanni)

Head elongate, broader than neck; eye with vertical elliptical pupil; body distinctly compressed laterally; scale smooth and glossy; anal1 (undivided); internasals almost as large prefrontal; nasal peet [dimple] present; preocular 2; lorel absent; postoculars 2; temporals 2+3; anterior large and elongate; supralabials 6 [3, 4 touching to eye]; ventral 216,sub coudal 62.
It is a small slim snake, glossy chocolate brownish to black colour. Bluish white flecks present on hind body, black checkered marking on forebody, a florescent or cream stripe present along the mid dorsal line from nake to tip of the tail. Dorsal line have a enlarged hexagonal scales, which are irregular shaped Head is brown in colour and dark black arrow mark present on it. Ventrals white however some brownish dots are present on them. Elachistodon westermanni is nocturnal snake but it is also observed during daytime. These snakes are not aggressive but some times they take [s-shaped] attack position like trinket snake.
These snakes are very slim and their body shape is flattent and triangular which provides flexibility for easy movement on trees. Due to very flexible body it can easily run on land as well as climb on trees.

The egg eaters are specific in food selection. which feed, on eggs of birds have their ancestors feeding on birds. This indicates that the ancestor of Indian egg eater snake used to feed on adult birds. It was also observed that the Indian egg eater snake prefers passerine eggs. The eggs of munias are much smaller than the eggs of sparrow and Doves. When the snake was given 10 eggs each of Munia, Sparrow and Doves on different days, it was observed that the egg eater feeds on 7 eggs of Munia at a time, 4 eggs of Sparrow at a time and only 2 eggs of Doves indicating their volume of diet. The size of eggs was also found to play a significant role in feeding mechanism. It is proposed that the egg size selection must be according to the morphological characters of jaws and skull bones of these snakes. The selection of eggs by Indian egg eater snake involves chemical cues as there are always predisposition of ancestral chemical molecules in descendants in the form of “ chemical signature ” The further studies in this respect are in progress. For more information please refer the the current issue of hamadryad, the journal of herpetology.
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  Kolegal ground gecko
Geckoella collegalensis...Geckoella collegalensis found in vidarbha.Geckoella Collegalensis (kollegal Gecko or Spotted Ground Gecko) is found in Vidarbha. A young snake rescuer in Nagpur Mr. Shrikant Uke found one small handsomely marked gecko in Pardi area of Nagpur. He was contact for identification to Mr. Parag H. Dandge & Ankur Kali(Nature Protectors & Reptiles Conservation Network) India. Mr. Parag Dandge Provisionally identified the Gecko as Geckoella Collegalensis.Identification confirmed after comparing Scalation data of the specimen with Data provided in the literature (The Fauna of BritishIndia, Ceylon & Burma. Malcolm A. smith 1935). Smith given cryptic description for this species but still it’s very poorly known Indian gecko, its occurrence in Vidarbha is surprising news for herp lovers in Vidarbha because it earlier reported from foothills of westernghats and some records from borivali national Park(Mumbai), this is the biggest range extension of occurrence for this Species. After the finding of mr. Uke one more spescimen got to Mr. Deepak Mate at WCLumred project identification confirmed by Mr. Vivek Chowhan & Mr. NanaZurmure ( RCN).Morphological Characters: - it is a small Indian Grounddwelling Gecko having light brown or grayish coloration above whichwith large rounded or oval Black bordered paired dark Brown spots arearranged. Eye has vertical pupil. the final version of the IUCN RedList categories (December 1994) has evolved through inputs fromspecialists for various groups of taxa all over the world puts thisspecies in VULNERABLE category. Vidarbha having Great Potential forthe Reptiles but Habitats Losses is the major threts for the Reptiles,Parag dandge Said. We are planning survey for to expose reptilianfauna of eastern Maharashtra, he promised. Shrikant Uke Said “I collect this gecko in Curiosity, I want to do work in the field ofherpetology, Vidarbha encloses Number of reptile spescies butconservation needed, and he cared. We Thanks to the Wild Lifedepartment Nagpur for its great help to this work. This Work would nothave been possible without the help of Mr. Keeshor Misrikotkar(Assistance Conservator of forest). Mr. Amol Khante, (Maitraban)Nagpur. We also thankfull to Mrs. Varsha Zade, head department ofzoology , Mr. Ramesh Chondekar & Mrs. Yashsri sardeshmukh, Govt.Vidarbha Institute Of science and Humanities, Amaravati for their great help during identification.
reg. parag dandge 09860145230
Sunday, November 2, 2008

Geckoella collegalensis.

November 2008 / December 2008 /

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