Five Rare Reptiles of India
Gharial:The gharial is a crocodilian from the family G a v i a l i d a e and among the longest of all living crocodilians. These reptiles can grow up to 6 metres and have dark grey skin and pale yellow belly. The male has matka/ghara like structure on the snout. This endangered species can be found in rivers like Ganga and Son and sanctuaries like National Chambal Sanctuary and Katarnighat Wildlife Sanctuary. The gharial is also known as the fisheating Indian Crocodile.
Batagurbaska:Batagurbaska, also known as Northern River Terrapin is an aquatic turtle and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has categorised it as critically endangered. The terrapin population is constantly declining due to factors such as being consumed as food, habitat loss, infrastructural activities, fishing nets, etc.
Otocryptisbeddomei:Otocryptisbeddomei or the Indian Kangaroo lizard is endemic to the Western Ghats of South India and is on the endangered list of the IUCN. The lizard is named after kangaroos because it runs on its hind legs with its body held erect.
Indian Star Tortoise:The Indian star tortoise is distributed in northwestern and eastern and southern India and is found in scrublands, grasslands, desert edges, agricultural fields, hedgerows and plantations. The tortoise is listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN. The species and its habitats face serious challenges from the illegal collection by local and international traders and habitat degradation.
Eurylepispoonaensis:Eurylepispoonaesnis or the poona skink reptile is endemic to the n o r t h e r n m o s t part of the Deccan peninsula according to the Biospheres, an NGO working in this area. The IUCN has enlisted this species in the endangered category. The species is common in grasslands, scrub forests, and hill ranges around Pune and Satara. The species and its habitats are under threat from urbanisation and tourismrelated infrastructural development.