Scientists have rediscovered species of wood snake (Xylophis indicus) inMeghamalai Wildlife Sanctuary after 140 years. It was last seen in 1878 and was discovered in same region by British military officer and naturalist Colonel Richard Henry Beddome.
It endemic (found only) in Meghamalai forests and Periyar Tiger Reserve. Recently snake discovered was 235 mm long and uniformly dark brown. It was female specimen. Its rediscovery needs to be validated by both morphological and genetic data.
Significance: Rediscovery of snake indicated that the quality of the habitat was good. It will aid in both management and conservation of biodiversity in this region.
Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary