Springing a Pleasant surprise! Four New Tiny Frog species in the Western Ghats
The Western Ghats continue to spring pleasant surprises on us. A team comprising of members from the Kerala Forest Department and the Delhi University has discovered seven new species of frogs in this ‘hot’ bio-diverse World Heritage Site. These species are small enough to sit on a human finger nail. Apart from their small size, four of these also have ‘cricket-like’ calling manners (chirping).
So close to eliminate fragile elements of our environment
These species are in grave danger of losing their environment. We are thus close to losing these species. Rampant ‘deforestation’ and ‘modern projects’ threaten these creatures. One of these frogs calls the forest near India’s Niagara (Athirappilly falls) its home. The eco-system near these falls are threatened due to a proposed hydro-electric project. One is reminded of the Silent Valley project and the peoples’ moment that forced the then PM Mrs. Indira Gandhi to step in and abort the project.
Let’s not forget the Lantana – The Plant That is a Pariah!
In the past 10 years, more than 100 new species of amphibians alone have been discovered. There is so much about the Western Ghats and other forests that we still do not know. New Treasures await our discovery.
But do we have time? The existing flora and fauna are living in an increasingly shrinking world. Not just from present day human excess.
The scourge of Lantana is increasingly veering its dangerous head. We need some robust framework/s to protect ourselves not just from the march of ‘progress’, but also from the ‘tentacles’ of Lantana.