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Vol. 9(3) Sept-Dec. 2011 Executive Committee President Dr. T.N. Vijayakumar Secretary Dr. Muhamed Jafer Palot Vice President Mr. Sathyan. N.K Jt. Secretary Mr. C.J. Thomas Treasurer Dr. Muhamed Rafeek A.P.M. Members Dr. Dinesan Cheruvat Dr. K. Kishorekumar Mr. K.G.Bimalnath Mr. V. Syam Mr. S. Arjun Mr. T. Ajithkumar Dr. Vijayanthi Dr. K. Fousy Mr. Muralikrishnan. V.P Dr.Rajesh K.P Mr. O. Jayarajan Dr. Zeenath Mr. Abdul Riyaz. K. Mr. Balakrishnan Valappil Mr. Madhuraj. T.V. Mr. Vijesh Vallikunnu Editor Mr. C. Sashikumar Editorial Board Dr. Dinesan Cheruvat Mr. Babu Kambrath Dr. K.P. Rajesh Mr. V.C. Balakrishnan Mr. Praveen. J Prof. I.G. Bhaskara Panikker Nature Education Officer Dr. K. Kishorekumar Cover: Orange Owlet Photographs: Balakrishnan Valappil Layout: Babu balan Ph: 09633390101 Printing: Magic Prints, Calicut Membership details: Ordinary -Rs.100/-, Life - Rs. 2000/-, Institutional - Rs. 250/-, Student - Rs. 50/- (upto 12th standard) Contact Address: Malabar Natural History Society, Sushila Mandir, B.G Road, Nadakkavu P.O., Calicut - 673 011, Ph: 09447470439, Email:,

EDITORIAL High literacy has been hailed as an indicator of social development in Kerala since India's independence. This is true to a certain extent and is reflected in the fields of public health, hygiene and awareness of social responsibilities like family planning. A direct outcome of high literacy is the popularity of Malayalam newspapers and periodicals in Kerala. An average Keralite is addicted to the newspaper, literally. A day in the remotest village in Kerala begins with men sitting in the local tea shop with a newspaper in hand. It goes without saying that the Malayalam newspaper has tremendous influence over the Kerala psyche. As elsewhere in India, issues relating to the conservation of the environment have come up in Kerala too, from time to time. The proposal to construct a dam across River Kunthi in Silent Valley in the early 1980s and the resistance to this by some enlightened individuals of the general public – now this breed is referred to as environmentalists – could be considered as the first instance here that was in the limelight of the print media. It has been three decades since then, it is interesting to see how the local press reacts to the environmental issues today. One good example of how the print media could influence the public sentiment and policy makers is the highlighting of the sufferings of the people in Kasaragode district who were the victims of years of aerial spraying of the pesticide endosulphan in the cashew plantations owned by the public sector Plantation Corporation of Kerala. The press reports and photographs gave great impetus to the sustained efforts of some committed individuals of the locality and their supporters from different parts of Kerala. After a prolonged campaign, all the political heavyweights had to jump into the bandwagon against the pesticide use which forced an adamant bureaucracy to budge and the use of the pesticide was finally banned in the state. But, the fourth estate had not been as enthusiastic as this on all the environmental issues. Even if they were, it has been only at the beginning of the campaigns, soon interest dwindled and the battle had to be continued by a small group of people indefinitely: we witness this in the case of the conservation of Chalakudy River. Another problem is that most of the papers with a large circulation in Kerala have a multitude of local editions and this, in a way, restricts the spread of a particular news item. In many cases, the stand of the press is not clear and they even contradict. A few examples: 1. The closure of the highway that runs through Bandipur National Park during the night invited heated opposition from certain quarters in Kerala, especially Wayanad district. Anyone who has driven through this road at least once will be aware of the presence of wild animals and it needs only basic reasoning to imagine the impact of heavy traffic on them, even during the day. Defying all logic, the press was generally supportive of the protest against the closure; at the same time several newspapers often carried photographs of animals hit by some vehicles and herds of elephants waiting beside the road to cross over! 2. A public hearing was held at Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary in January 2011 to discuss the proposal of bringing the adjacent Kottiyur and Thirunelly Reserve Forests under the protected area network. The officials of the Kerala Forests and Wildlife Department, who initiated the meeting, elected representatives of the panchayaths, members of the legislative assembly of Kerala, representatives of the media and members of the general public were present. The people from the Thirunelly area protested against the proposal citing examples of the human- animal conflicts that already existed there, and argued that declaring the reserve forest as a sanctuary would aggravate the problem further; they boycotted the meeting without waiting for any explanation from the Forest Department officials. The villagers living on the periphery of Kottiyur also had such reservations, but the MLA of the locality explained to them how it would be helpful to get sufficient funds to mitigate problems like humananimal conflicts once the reserve forest was declared as a sanctuary. Her talk was very effective and convinced the people. But, on the following day, all the newspapers carried reports only on the boycott and there was not a word about the other happenings at the hearing. These are just two instances of how a biased media can mislead public opinion. The same story continues on the proposal of culling wild boar population. Newspapers in certain parts of Kannur district carried reports of villagers being attacked by the wild boar almost every day! Generally, reports on wildlife attacks are always exaggerated and the forest department officials are pictured as villains. Far-reaching environmental issues like the proposal of Pathrakadavu project in place of Silent Valley, the extensive illegal sand mining which has killed River Bharathapuzha, the destruction of mangroves in various parts of the state, encroachment of the backwater systems – all these momentarily catch the fancy of the press, but never sustain it. Naturalists, on their part, should be aware of the part the media can play on several conservation issues in Kerala. Having a good interaction with the press is very important. Giving the correct information and cross checking the accuracy of the reporting also will enhance the cause. C. Sashikumar



Conservation for Extraction Part-I

Historical Antecedents of Forest Reservation in Colonial Travancore1 Amruth M. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi, Thrissur. “The instrument, the knife, that carved out the new, rudimentary forest was the razor-sharp interest in the production of a single commodity….Having come to see the forest as a commodity, scientific forestry set about refashioning it as a commodity machine. Utilitarian simplification in the forest was an effective way of maximizing wood production in the short and intermediate term. Ultimately, however, its emphasis on yield and paper profits, its relatively short time horizon, and, above all, the vast array of consequences it had resolutely bracketed came back to haunt it.” James C. Scott (1998) Seeing Like a State

In this multi-part paper I shall describe the efforts made from 1850s to 1940s in creating government-‘forest estate’ in Travancore. These efforts were made with the aid of conceptual armoury drawn from the emergent science of Continental Forestry. I will demonstrate how nature/forests began to be viewed as a resource and how it was utilised in an effort to govern nature to enhance production and productivity. Here, ideas of ‘improvement’ and ‘progress’ are treated as developmental reasons. We will proceed by examining key episodes in the introduction of Continental Forestry ideals under the Colonial conditions. Thrust will be to demonstrate how forestry aimed to ‘conserve’ forests for future production and consumption. Before embarking on a description of the measures adopted for establishing a government forest estate by means of reservation of forests, it is necessary to understand the contexts and historical antecedents of these developments. Historical Antecedents This section will provide the historical context in which the measures to create forests was introduced in Travancore towards the last decades of the 19th century. Forests of Travancore were linked to the world system of trade for centuries. But, there was no systematic scheme envisaged for improvement of forests prior to second half of 19 century. European and Arabian trade at the South-Western Coast of India from sixteenth to eighteenth centuries were predominantly in spices and condiments, most of which were procured from the forested inlands.2 The consistency and volume of trade in historical accounts suggest that there existed collection and supply networks and merchant guilds developed due to trade.3 By late 17th century, European traders began to exert considerable political influence on the local rulers with regards to the monopolistic trade rights on pepper and other merchandise. The goods thus collected served as capital for inland trade also. Towards the end of 17th century and early decades of the 18th century, the trade centres were began to be dominated by the foreign trading companies. However, their gaze had not fallen on the forestland from where most of the spices originated to flow to these centres. Gradually, centralised political power was extended to the whole of the territory, especially following the entry of chartered trading companies of England and France, and it culminating in Colonial domination by the end of 18th century.4 It was substantiated that after 1792 an important shift took place in terms of sources of the capital that financed the Colonial activities in Travancore (as elsewhere in the south-western coast).5 This shift in policy had long-lasting impacts on shaping the Land Revenue Administration and consequent interventions in the forestlands of newly annexed regions. Land revenue became important source of financing the Colonial project in comparison to trade surplus. The shift occurred was coterminous with annexation of Malabar and incorporation of the Princely States of Cochin and Travancore to the territories of English East India Company. The two consecutive treaties with the Company, the first in 1795 and the second in 1805, left Travancore with only a nominal autonomy in adopting the measures or reforms suggested by the paramount power. The provisions of the treaty of 1795 bound Travancore to closely adhere to the ‘advices as the English Government shall occasionally judge it necessary to offer’ on matters relating to state finances, collection of revenue, administration of justice, extension of commerce, encouragement of trade, agriculture and industry.6 Of course, British paramountcy had deemed itself fit to make advices in most matters. The second treaty of 1805 revised tributes, raising it almost ten times more than that of the previous.7 The period that followed the second treaty witnessed the revolt of 1808 in Travancore8 and subsequently Col. John Munroe assuming the offices of Dewan and Resident.9 This situation was especially conducive for British to wield power in all the matters of the State. The Resident virtually assumed the power of throne on grounds of the fragile political situation in the State. Therefore, the period of Col. Munroe as British Resident of the State witnessed a radical restructuring of the State’s general administration in line with that prevailed in British India.10 Among the successive reformation and reorganisation of the revenue administration in the Travancore the most crucial one was that of Munroe’s period (1811-15). The characteristic feature of this reform is a conscious effort for emulating the similar system prevalent in the Madras Presidency. The revenue administration, therefore, became the most influential and authoritative apparatus of the state. The tributes and the land revenue became the most important source of income in Travancore as elsewhere.11 This dependence on the land revenue meant drawing the State policies towards the land revenue settlements as a measure of intensification of agriculture based production.12 Following the transfer of territories to the British Crown in late 1850s extension of the land put to ‘productive’ purposes received a new impetus.



Focus on Timber It is well known that the affairs of forests were keenly observed and controlled by the British paramountcy as the fine timbers for various purposes, especially teak for the Royal Navy’s seafaring vessels, had assumed strategic importance in the domination of maritime trade. The interest of the Travancore government on the forests was mainly to maximize the revenue for which it was hard-pressed due to the payment of tributes to paramountcy. In early decades of the 19th century, the growing scarcity of fine timber in the forests, due to indiscriminate felling by private agencies, had already become a concern.13 As a result, more attention fell on the affairs of forests, especially on timber. The office of Conservator was among the first three British offices that were created in the State which in a way indicates the importance given to forests by the colonial power.14 During the second decade of 19th century, almost half of the total land area (approximately 8754 sq. km. out of the 16458 sq. km.) of the State was forested, while the area of forests in the metropolitan countries such as Britain was insignificantly small.15 Early Colonial interests on the forests were on spices and timber. Among the forest spices, cardamom was a state monopoly for nearly a century until late 19th century. There were inquiries on the availability of teak timber from the forests of the Malabar Coast right from the late 18th century.16 As early as in the late 18th century a timber depot was opened at Aleppey during the period of Dewan Raja Kesava Das.17 A post of Conservator was created in early 1800s to organise extraction and supply of the timber to the depots in Aleppey to be sold to the British-Indian dockyards for shipbuilding.18 Towards 1820s, it was reported that teak at the most accessible parts of the river basins that were leased out to the private contractors for extraction were exhausted of timber. Subsequently extraction of teak by private contractors was replaced by the direct operation by government agency under the supervision of a British officer.19 Initially the offices of the Conservator and Commercial Agent were held by a single officer. The original purpose of Commercial Agency was sale of Sirkar pepper alone. Later monopoly commodities such as cardamom, teak timber and other forest produces were also sold by the Commercial Agent. It also functioned ‘…as a trustworthy medium of supplying all valuable foreign articles of merchandize required for the use of Palace and State….’20 The duties of the Conservator and Commercial Agent were separated in early 1820s. The first fulltime Conservator was a British, Urban Verres Munro, son of Col.Munro, the British Resident at Travancore. The conservancy did not mean conservation in its presently used sense. Concern of the office of the conservator was confined to overseeing the supply and sale of the timber in the timber yard at the Aleppey. Manpower was limited and the Department was manned by personnel who usually had no prior experience or expertise in forestry. Major activities of the Department were procuring of timber and hill produce to government Commercial Agent, levying of river duty on the timber transported, and issuance of regulations and proclamations for controlling hill cultivation and forest offences. A few proclamations for restricting the extraction of state monopoly produces were issued during the period. The Conservator’s territories within the State were loosely defined either in terms of occurrences of the royal timber or in terms of the watch stations it maintained to check unauthorised transportation of timber through rivers. Apart from the intensification of agriculture based production, there were also attempts of extending area under plantation crops. For instance, Travancore responded to the demand for land by European planters favourably by fixing concessional rent and moderate taxes.21 State also incurred expenses of developing communication networks much necessary for increasing accessibility to hitherto unopened territories / plantation zones in the hills. These policies favoured the intentions of European planters who were interested in growing subtropical cash crops in the higher altitudes; gradually 22 resulting in the large-scale plantations in the High Ranges. In the wake of establishment of coffee plantations in the High Ranges by J.D. Munro, the then Dewan of Travancore observed: The Sircar feels satisfied that the country would largely benefit by the introduction of the capital, skill and enterprise of European gentlemen in utilising tracts of valuable land, which for the most part would otherwise be untouched for generations. It has accordingly been the anxious desire of the Sircar to afford facilities for planters… (RAT 1862-63: 13). Extension of plantations meant alteration of forested lands. During the European / Arabian trade, the companies were never involved in production. Rather they confined to the costal area. Only after the British began to concentrate on the production, the forestlands came under their surveillance; this was consequential in the alteration of forests. Domesticating Nature-Usefulness of Knowledge As mentioned earlier, in the early 19th century, the locus of control on forests was on the produce. This was operationalised through monopolisation or controlling of the transportation and trade of these forests produces. Gradually the attention and locus of control had shifted to forestland and its productivity. Timber such as rosewood and anjily were declared as monopolies along with teak by 1844. Sandalwood and ebony were made so in 1865.23 Similarly, a score of other forest produces such as wax, ivory and cardamom were also made state monopolies. There were stringent regulations on capturing and killing of wild elephants. Further, by 1873 itself two Assistant Conservators of the Department were posted at Malayattoor and Collacadavoo, as these locations were ‘the principal stations to which the timber felled in the forests… [were] brought and sent out to various parts.’24 Though these aspects of control on timber and hill produces and their procurement and sale were often taken for the forest conservancy, the organized drive for ‘improvement’ of the forestlands on the basis of Forestry was to begin only in the post-1860s.25 This change was coterminous with similar development of the tropical forestry and commercial plantation agriculture in other parts of the British-India.26 In 1864, following statement appeared in the Report on the Administration of Travancore: …it is the belief of the Sirkar that the management of the forests is yet susceptible of much improvement.



There are parts of forests where there is magnificent timber which ought to be, but which cannot be, brought down; first because there are no roads, and secondly, because Elephant-power, considered indispensable, is limited. The renovation of the forests which are being worked, is left entirely to natural processes….It is the intention of the Sirkar to arrange for the Conservator visiting some of the best worked forests of British India, with a view to see if any particular instruction is to be gained. (RAT 1864-65: 52) Need for improving the forests, making the forest work more efficiently and improved timber productivity are well reflected in the above statement. Travancore attempted to replicate British Indian system of forest administration. Timber extraction at the direct supervision of the government necessitated establishment of a network of labours, contractors and traders. Activities such as capture of elephants and their training proved to be an indispensable part of the scheme. Forests of Mahendragiri which was managed by the Revenue Department were brought under the Conservator in 1882. This act was a response to the indiscriminate felling and consequent directive passed by Madras Presidency. In the prereservation period (i.e. prior to 1890s), such incidents of inclusion of forest tracts to the Forest Department’s jurisdiction were frequent. Majority of the forest tracts in the State, excepting the land under the supervision of Superintendent of Cardamom and a small portion in the Southern Travancore, came under the jurisdiction of the Conservator by then.27 Another significant development in pre-reservation era was a change in the land revenue policy that occurred around 1883. New policy emphasised taxing the fertility (productive potential) of land whereas the old one taxed the actual crop produced.28 One of the consequences of adopting this criterion was the creation of newer productivity categories of land that belonged to definite tax-tariff. The land is taxed on these tariff rates even if it was not cultivated. In an address to the land owners of Travancore, Dewan explained the reason behind this reform as below: It is true that only a portion of the land yields any return at present, and that the vacant portion even if planted at once, would take probably 7 or 8 years to come into bearing, but surely the unplanted portion can be and a matter of fact, turned to account in a hundred ways. The coconut plant does not interfere with the ground being cultivated, with anything the owner likes to grow. He can and does grow vegetables, plantains, arrowroot, yams and edible roots of all kinds. It can be no hardship to pay a trifle for land which can be put profitable account in so many ways. It is true that the owner pays little or nothing for such land now, but that is precisely why he does not care to work, why he is lazy and earns so little, and why his cultivation, such as it is, is so slovenly. The sooner the cultivators in Travancore are made to see that if they take up land they are bound to pay for it, the better for them and the country in general. They will become much more useful and active members of the community than they are. (RAT 1882-83: cxxiii) This was a manifestation of the State’s aspirations for making its subjects more enterprising in the production of wealth by making improvements on land.29 The rationale behind the shift of attention from crops to fertility of land subsequently influenced the perception on forms of land use also. The changed treatment of forest as ‘land’, as opposed to the standing crop of timber, also justified the reservation of forests and charting out territories for ‘improvement’ of its ‘value’ with the aid of specific management inputs.30 This was a criterion already followed in the British-Indian revenue settlements. But in Travancore, the shift was coterminous with the shift in forest policy. The Forest Act, which came into effect in 1888, classified forests in terms of its productive potential of timber. Similarly, choice of plantation sites was also made by considering their productivity and land value. Therefore, these logics of reforms significantly recast the idea of what forests ought to be. From this historical background let us return to the forestry discourse under colonial conditions. The political-economic rationale inherent in forestry discourses were often bundled along with other legitimising discourses of colonialism and modernisation. In a deeper sense, this logic formed the leading thread of practice. However, there were crevices between the rationale and practices. This rationality was different from the rationality of other competing discourses on desiccation and shifting cultivation.31 This is to argue that, although colonialism is all about control of economy, the self-justification of it could be achieved only through the Orientalist discourse.32 Orientalism represented the Occident as progressed and Orient as yet to be progressed or primitive. Therefore, when the notions of progress and primitive are invoked, they imply certain notions of altered ways of production for which society should be reordered; only then the economic end is ensured. In a way, this provided new measures of civility, progress and improvement. To achieve this end, novel mechanisms and institutions of calculative procedure were introduced. In the forthcoming section I would sketch the process of realignment of institutions to a more amenable modular form for enabling ‘legibility’33. This legibility was rendered by practice of Eurocentric/modern knowledge which in turn simultaneously constituted hybrid forms of knowledge. This knowledge constituted new objects; created diverse new regulatory strategies; mechanisms, technologies, institutions, policies, language regimes and calculations. This enabled strategies of control and action from distance and proximity.34 Achieving such controls required an appraisal of existing forest governance and finding out its defects for better conservancy of forests. This requirement was necessitated by the increased demand for wood and timber which had to be met by intensification of extraction. The idea of sustained yield that was already in circulation demanded the quantification of available resources over space and time. It was found that what is equally important is phasing and planning of extraction; where, techniques of Continental Forestry came in handy. However, existence of suitable administrative machinery, legal provisions and well-demarcated forest territory, which are the prerequisites for introducing Sustained Yield Principles, were lacking in the State. Moreover, by early 1880s, it was being strongly felt that the forest had much room for improvement, provided the Department is reconstituted to suit the changed times.35 Timber prices had escalated so much that the existent



rates of seigniorage were redundant. Besides, valuable forests were being destroyed due to ‘kumari or hill cultivation and by fires which in the absence of legislation could not have been checked’.36 As a consequence, in 1884, a Joint Committee on Administration of Travancore Forests, consisting of senior officers of forest, revenue and other departments, was constituted to look into the matters of forest administration and report on its defects. In the joint Report, the Committee expressed their conviction that there existed an urgent need for a revision of the system of administration of forests in the State. Assistant Conservator, T.F. Bourdillon, was assigned the duty of preparing a detailed report on the modalities of effecting these changes. The Committee also made proposals for reserving forests and for making an enactment similar to that of Madras Forest Act. Subsequently, a draft regulation was prepared. Travancore promulgated the first Forest Regulation in 1888 for ‘want of a comprehensive legislative enactment for the proper protection’ of forests.37 The Act emulated Madras Forest Act (1882) which was in turn a modified version of Indian Forest Act brought out in 1878. Indian Forest Act had provisions for forming two kinds of forests the ‘reserved forests’ and ‘protected forests’. In case of reserved forest, the right to use it was exclusively vested with the government, boundaries of which were clearly demarcated and others could use it only with government permission. Whereas the protected forests were those Government forests that were not yet been surveyed and temporarily been open to limited private use. Madras Government declined to implement the Indian Forest Act of 1878 as the rights of the villagers over the forests were such as to prevent the formation of exclusive State Reserves. Madras Forest Act also was framed in the same general lines as the Indian Forest Act. However, the procedures relating to the constitution of reserved forests were made more people-friendly and simple.38 The regulation of 1888 was revised and expanded in 1893 with provisions for asserting state rights over the monopoly forest produces. The regulation of 1888 concerned only about the reservation forests; this was retained in the 1893 regulation more or less fully.39 The Government was aware of the controversies such bills and regulations created in other British-Indian Provinces.40 Finally, the forest regulation was passed in Travancore and it prohibited most of activities that had been practiced laymen in the forests.41 The Travancore Forest Regulation was formulated in close compliance with the similar acts of Madras and British-India. The Forest Rules along with the forest regulation provided a detailed framework for translating the ideals of the Continental Forestry into practice. The legal framework formed the crucial invention and contrivance that empowered the foresters to assert the rightness of their specialised knowledge over the “ignorant” by labelling their practices as criminal. To suit the operationalisation of the new legal instruments, the Forest Department was completely reorganised by the turn of 20th century by dividing the territory under its jurisdiction into Divisions and Ranges on the lines of the British Forest Administration. As in the case of other Acts and policies, in this instance also Travancore replicated British-Indian administrative courses, of course with a time lag in comparison to Bengal and Madras. The objective of passing forest regulation was to consolidate all activities to a forest territory that was exclusively owned by the state. This was made possible by extinguishment of the private rights once and for all; this process was called ‘forest settlement’; where, the word ‘settlement’ stands for settlement of private rights. State owned Forest Estate was a requirement for practicing the Continental Forestry that was originally constituted as one of the cameral sciences in the 18 and 19 century Germany and France.42 The condition that made such reforms necessary is reflected in a retrospective statement made in the year 1930s by the official historian. No rules were issued for the guidance of the department; no forest demarcation was done; no survey was carried out; no fire-protection was attempted; no roads and bridle-paths were opened in the forests; and no rest-houses or camping sheds were constructed to facilitate inspection. The unsystematic felling and removal of timber was another grave menace to forest growth. No process of extraction under any working plan was contemplated, while smuggling was rampant, and the insufficiency and inefficiency of the small illiterate, irresponsible preventive staff employed to combat the evil was all but notorious. Nor was the complicated, unreliable and unmethodical manner of keeping accounts in the departments calculated to enhance its prestige. (Iyer 1998: 321) The need of the time was a departure from this chaos. What is aimed at was institutionalisation and modernisation of forest governance. In the part-II of this we will examine some key process in the creation of a normalised forest in Travancore. References: Aitchison, C.U.(comp.) A Collection of Treaties. Engagements and Sanads Relating to India and Neighbouring Countries. Vol.10. Calcutta: 1929; Delhi: Mittal Publications, 1983 Bourdillon,T.F. (1893). Report on the Forests of Travancore. Trivandrum: Travancore Government Press. Chundamannil, M. (1993). History of Forest Management in Kerala. Peechi, Thrissur, Kerala, India: Kerala Forest Research Institute. Grove,Richard (1994). Green Imperialism: The Colonial Expansion, Tropical Island Edens and the Origins of Environmentalism, 16001860. Delhi: Oxford University Press. Iyer P. U. (1998) [Reprint, original year of publication not mentioned] Progress of Travancore Under His Highness Sree Moolam Tirunal. Department of Cultural Publications. Government of Kerala Thiruvananthapuram. Latour, B. (1987). Science in Action. Milton Keynes: Open University Press. Ludden, D. (1999). An Agrarian History of south India. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Mann, M. (2001). German Expertise in India? Early Forest Management on the Malabar Coast, 1792-1805. In G. Berkemer, H. K. Tilman Frasch & J. Lutt (Eds.), Explorations in the History of South Asia: Essays in Honour of Deitmar Rothermund (pp. 9-26). New Delhi: Manohar. Mathew, K.S. (1999). Trade & Commerce (1500-1800). In P. Cheriyan (Ed.), Perspectives on Kerala History- The Second Millennium (pp.



180-221). Thiruvananthapuram: State Editor, Kerala State Gazetteers. Miller, P., & Rose, N. (1993). Governing Economic Life. In M. Gane & T. Johnson (Eds.), Foucault's New Domains (pp. 75-107). London: Routledge. Nair,C.T.S., Chundamannil, M., & Muhammad E. (1984). Intensive Multiple Use Forest Management in the Tropics: A Case Study of the Evergreen Forest and Teak Plantations in Kerala, India. Peechi, Thrissur, Kerala, India: Kerala Forest Research Institute. Rajan, R. (1998). Imperial Environmentalism or Environmental Imperialism? European Forestry, Colonial Foresters and the Agendas of Forest Management in British India 1800-1900. In R. Grove (Ed.), Nature and the Orient. London: Oxford University Press. Rammohan, K.T. (1996). Material Processes and Developmentalism: Interpreting Economic Change in Colonial Tiruvitamkur, 1800 to 1945, University of Kerala Rammohan, K.T. (2006). Tales of Rice: Kuttanad, Southwest India. Thiruvananthapuram: Centre for Development Studies. RAT (Report on the Administration of Travancore) various years (from 1862 to 1947), Travancore Govt., Trivandrum. Said, E. W. (1978). Orientalism: Western Concepts of the Orient. London: Penguin Books. Scott, J. C. (1998). Seeing Like a State: How Certain Schemes to Improve Human Condition Have Failed. New Haven: Yale University Press. TFM (Travancore Forest Manual) (1917, 1947), Travancore Govt., Trivandrum. Tharakan, P.K.M. (1999). Development of Colonial Economy In Kerala, (1850-1947). In Cheriyan, P.J. (Ed.), Perspectives on Kerala History- The Second Millennium (pp. 360-401). Thriuvananthapuram: State Editor, Kerala State Gazetteers. Varghese, T. C. (1970). Agrarian Change and Economic Consequence: Land Tenures in Kerala, 1850-1960. Bombay: Allied. Ward,B.S, & Conner,P.E. (1863)[1994]. Geographical and Statistical Memoir of the Survey of the Travancore and Cochin States Executed under the Superintendence of Lieutenants Ward and Conner from July 1816 to the end of the Year 1820 Vol. I. Reprinted State Editor, Gazetteers Department, Trivandrum. 1. This is an extract from a forthcoming monograph titled Governing 'Man' and 'Nature' in Colonial Travancore. 2. M a j o r i t e m s o f t r a d e i n c l u d e d : p e p p e r, g i n g e r, c o i r, c i n n a m o n , s e a l i n g w a x , c l o v e , c a r d a m o m ,

myrobalan,indigo,tamarind, Myrrh, zerumbet, camphor, cubebs, nutmeg, sandal, zedoary etc. 3. Mathew (1999 : 180-221) 4. Roughly in the mid-18 century, one of the Kingdom - Venad - consolidated and extended command over the smaller principalities with the aid of English East India Company to form Travancore. 5. Tharakan (1999: 360-401) 6. Aitchison (1983) quoted in Rammohan (1996: 13) 7. Enhanced from Rs. 78,000 to more than Rs. 8,00,000 (Varghese 1970, quoted in Chundamannil 1993: 13) 8. Revolt of 1808 was lead by Dewan Velu Thambi Dalawa. 9. Resident was the diplomatic representative of the British Paramaountcy in Princely States. Col. John Munroe was the Resident of the Travancore from 1810 to 1819. His assuming of the office of the Dewan and Resident simultaneously, was responsible for enabling revenue reform. 10. These reforms had further implications of weakening of the existing upper-caste dominated power structure in State. For a detailed treatment of the impact of the revolt of 1808, leading to a near total annexation of State by British, and subsequent reforms in the line of British-India, see Rammohan (1996: 11-17). The structure of the upper caste dominated state administration, including revenue and justice up to the lower rung at village level, was affected by the reforms. 11. The new modes of land revenue system also had decisive influence on various social and production relations, especially, effecting a shift towards increasingly monetised economy, among almost all strata of society. (Ludden 1999: 170-72) For instance, during 1867-68, the revenue from the paddy land in Travancore was Rs. 11,13,006, while the same from garden land Rs. 4,02,804, out of the total revenue Rs. 16,69,316 from land. This means that, the revenue due to paddy amounted to roughly 67 percent of total land revenue. The gross revenue from all sources were about 52 lacs (RAT 1867-68 : 32). 12. Ludden (1999:159-70 ) 13. Mann (2001) 14. The other two were, offices of political resident and the commercial agent (Rammohan 1996: 95). 15. According to Bourdillon, the average acreage of forest per 100 persons in Travancore and United Kingdom was respectively 90 and 6 (Bourdillon 1993: 122). th 16. Mann (2001: 9-26). By the end of the 18 century the British in effect replaced the Arabs as buyers of teak timber for their construction of the sea going vessels (Chundamannil 1993 : 12). 17. Chundamannil (1993. :12) 18. Chundamannil (1993:13) 19. Ward and Conner (1863 : 41) 20. RAT (1874-75: 56) 21. Concessional land rent announced in this regard continued to be the same for both food and cash crops. Declining state income from conventional trade and restrictions on imports of rice were also been reasons for adopting measures for promoting paddy cultivation (Rammohan 2006 : 15-22). 22. Augmenting of the revenue flow continued to be the motive behind most of the policies and proclamations announced in Travancore



pertaining to the utilisation of land, especially those intended to facilitate expansion of food and cash crop cultivation in the forested lands, even in late 19th and early 20th centuries. 23. Chundamannil (1993 :12-13) 24. RAT (1872-74: 82) 25. See Rammohan (1996: 95-106), According to him, there was a demand explosion for timber in the post 1860s which would have prompted State to make initiatives for improvement of forests. 26. The British Indian Forest Department establishment had a formal beginning in 1864 with Dietrich Brandis as Inspector General of Forests (Chundamannil 1993: 20). The first version of Indian Forest Act was brought out in 1865, soon after the institution of the Forest Department. It was replaced by a more 'sophisticated' Act in 1878. 27. The Cardamom Hills was under the control of Conservator until 1869. It was thereafter transferred to Cardamom Department which started functioning in 1823. The forests in South Travancore was under the direct control of the Revenue Department (RAT 1872-74: 82) also see Nair, Chundamannil and Muhammad (1984 : 53). th 28. Reforms in the revenue administration that took place in the early 19 century under the zealous initiative of Col. Munroe as the British Resident involved annexation of the land and property owned by the temples. This brought to focus the land as a source of revenue. The assessment of tax was based on the actual produce from land. The new system of assessment all lands were classified based on the productivity classification and determining the possible maximum yield from cultivation of each of these categories of land. th 29. See the Address by the Dewan of Travancore to the Leading Landholders, on 24 March 1883 (RAT 1882-83: cvii-cxxv). Such policies had already been in practice in Madras Presidency. However, for us what is interesting is the change in the general logic in taxation and locus of control (RAT 1882-83: cxxiii). 30. It may be noted that, in Travancore, the policy of reservation of forests was followed on the basis of the report of the committee on improvement of forests -1884. However, both these policies were coterminous. 31. See Grove (1994) for a scholarly treatment on colonial Desiccation Discourses. 32. See Said (1978) 33. See Scott (1998) for the specific meaning in which the word 'legibility' is used here. 34. 'Action at a Distance', See Latour (1987) cited in Miller and Rose (1993: 76). 35. RAT (1882-83 : 53). Also see Rammohan (1996: 96-97), where he demonstrated that there was a demand-explosion for timber around 1860s. It is also stated that “The quantity of teak exports from Tiruvitamkur doubled between 1882 and 1892. Between 1860 and 1900, the value of timber of all kinds exported expanded by more than seven-fold….” 36. RAT (1882-83: 53) 37. RAT (1890-91:113) 38. The Indian Forest Act was passed in 1878; the Madras Forest Act was delayed by four years because of the strong disagreement prevailed among the cadres of foresters in the Presidency on annexing forests as intended in Indian Forest Act. Majority of the foresters in the Madras Presidency were sympathetic to the needs of villagers. Resultantly the Madras Act was more liberal than the Indian Forest Act. I have not ventured a comparison of the provisions of the Acts of Madras and Travancore, but it is glaringly evident that the provisions such as village forest is lacking in the Travancore Act. 39. TFM (1917: 1-2) 40. As introduction to bill, T.Rajaram Rao provided a detailed introduction for the Act. In the very beginning of the Introduction he stated that “While the working of Forest laws is causing much heart-burning and complaint in British India, the introduction of a Bill passing a law on the same subject in this country requires special explanation….”. (TFM 1917: 1) 41. TFM (1917: 13-17) 42. Rajan (1998).

Sighting of Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola and the first photographic record of the species from Kerala Mujeeb Panchili Panchili House, Kaithappoil , Thamarassery, Kozhikode, Kerala

Here, I place on record the sighting of Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola in a paddyfield at Thamarassery, Kozhikode district. Date and time: 29 December 2011, 9am to 10am. Description: Very much like Blyth's ReedWarbler A. dumetorum, but had a rufous tinge on its back, rump and sides of breast; the bill was shorter than that of Blyth's and had a dark tip with

pale lower mandible. The pale supercilium was broad, long, edged dark above and extended well behind the eye. The dark eyestripe also was prominent and extended behind the eye, alongside the supercilium. The throat was white and the underpart was whitish, with buffish breast



and flanks. It had pinkish brown legs and feet. Habitat and behavior: I saw the birds in a damp paddyfield near Thamarassery around 40 m above MSL, c.30 km away from Kozhikode on the Wayanad route. There were four birds searching for food, along with Blyth's Reed-Warbler and Whiterumped Munia Lonchura striata. These birds could be seen clearly when they moved around in the paddy. They usually foraged at the base of the plants, occasionally perching on the stalks. I could photograph two individual birds of the species during the

time of observation. Sashikumar et. al. (2011) have included this species in the secondary list ('unverified sight reports') and mention two sightings from Kerala. As far as I know, this is the first sighting of this species from Kerala, substantiated by photographs. Reference: S a s h i k u m a r, C . , P r a v e e n J . , Muhammed Jafer Palot and P O Nameer. 2011. Birds of Kerala – Status and Distribution. D C Books, Kottayam.

Fluttering of Birds in Malayalam Poetry Rajeswari C Guest Lecturer, Department of Malayalam, Mercy College, Palakkad

Love of nature is an innate emotional expression of a poet. In his/her creation, many poets have used birds and animals as symbolic representations of human life. Among all wild creatures, the bird has always been closest to human kind because flight and song make birds exceptionally noticeable in every sort of environment and can easily be observed and appreciated. Thus, birds become important poetic imagery in the thoughts and creativity of poets. While referring to seasons, life and culture, birds have profoundly influenced the minds of Malayalam poets. That might have been the reason for the presence of birds in various forms in Malayalam poetry throughout history. Malayalam poets tried to reflect the changing landscape and human nature using birds as symbols. Thus, the fluttering of birds in Malayalam literature, especially poetry is very deep and pervasive. Apart from narrating the beauty of nature, Malayalam poets took it as the moral responsibility to protect birds and animals through their writings. They could recognize that the extinction of these flying creatures may cause the demise of this vibrant earth. This has created the blending of many environmental issues the earth faces, with poetry. Unlike the traditional Malayalam poetic style, a new environmental awareness evolved on such issues during the later stage. In order to provide the beauty of nature in poems, birds are used as backgrounds in different ways. At the same time the bird has also been used as an instrument to recognize the natural catastrophe. Thus, the birds are considered as a natural element in poetry for soothsaying the natural disasters. For all these poets, birds were symbols of freedom. They have served to express views against social injustice and evils from time to time. In his writing 'Kilippattu', Ezhuthachan has tried to generate a moral sentiment through Bhakthi. Nurturing of such an emotion was highly demanded during that period. One can find names such as Garuda, Jadayu, Sampathi etc. often in the ancient epics and literature.Though these birds resemble the species of kites, eagles or vultures, the poets gave them human attributes. The poets adopted birds to be the voice of nature. The versatile faces of nature in poetry such as the passive, roaring &dreaming states could be depicted by the presence of birds. It could also be used as the symbol of the savage earth. In his writing 'Oru Vilapam', V C Balakrishna Panicker has used the sounds of Mottled Wood-Owl (kuttichulan) for expressing the anger of nature. In this example, nature's roar has been symbolized in the way of an epidemic. Hence, these symbols are used as concrete objects to represent an abstract idea. In modern Malayalam poetry, different imageries have been evolved to fight against the greed of man. Thus it comes out as an expression from the heart of poet against the deterioration of the environment. “ oru kiliyude nilavilikkenthu Vila ! prakrithyakanakkunokunnu' Ningalen lokathe enthu chaithu- Sugathakumari] ' Kaatharamakum vilikku maruvili Etho kilithan vithumball mathram� [Vanarodanam-Sugathakumari]



The symbol of birds helps to capture the mind and feelings of any reader. This is a perception from the poets who deal with nature in their writings. These poets tried to create awareness in the society on the changes in nature brought about by man himself. In 'Ezhimala' Sachidanadan gives an example for that. The poem gives a picture of nature's disaster caused by the encroachment of man. “ Pettennorudivasam Bootukalkumeethe bootukal vannu Azhissiyude pukalppattukalkkumeethe Buldosarukal panjuvannu Paranarude velicham pootha Vengayilum churappunnayilum Kuruvikalude chora therichu veenu” The plot of the poem narrated the issues that evolved in connection with the establishment of Ezhimala Naval Academy. Though the poet had always depicted the murmur and music of little sparrows in a romantic mood, the sparrow seems to be looking at the darkness of danger in this poem. The poet has constructed imaginary symbols for this. It seems that the usages are made according to the suitability of culture. “ 'vithum kaikottu' mennengum Muzhangummattu rappakal Mavinthoppil ninnu paduMa vishupakshiyengupoy” [Sankrama sandhyail – P Kunjiraman nair] By saying thus the poet indicates the loss of nature. The song of 'Vishupakshi' - the migratory Indian Cuckoo is a part of childhood nostalgia of many Malayalees. The poet has written the whole poem in the same tune of the song of the cuckoo and the image created by the poet can make any one fly with the bird to its own world. These images create a feeling of oneness with the bird. But there are some expressions such as 'pathirakozhi', 'mazhapakshi' etc. which gets a place in poetry, though all of them are imaginary birds representing some characteristics of humans or nature. No Malayalam poet ever invoked the beauty of nature into the poem to such an extent like P Kunjiraman Nair. We can also perceive the devastation of nature in his poems and he strongly advocated the need for conservation of nature through his writings. . “ chirichu kaivasathakki Thoppake chathiyan mazhu Veedilatha vishupakshi Etho desantharathilay” [Poomottinte kani- P Kunjiraman Nair] “ Nilachu vanmaragalokkeyum vetti Kudiyirakkapetta vishupakshithan kalaganam” [Parudesa nashtam – P Kunji raman Nair] These lines symbolise the homeless birds that are forced to move away from their native place. These poems also depict the jinx of deteriorating rural villages in the midst of modern industrialised civilisation. The wail of birds, homeless birds, screams of birds, vanishing birds, voiceless birds etc. are the usages that indicate the destiny of depleting environment in poetry. In his poem 'Bhumikkoru charamgeetham' ONV Kurupu states that the brightness of sweet truth of life in earth at least once lies on the wings of swan, may be on its silver edges. The poet also elaborates nature's emotion through classic attribution. “ nammalkuyirthanna bhumiyopavamam Thanmakkaleyourthu kezhum 'Jarithayay' [Sargaka pakshikal - ONV] The phrase 'kezhum Jarithayay' is a usage of classic imagination and represents a mother's sacrifice and tears for the survival of her children. According to Leonard Lutwack, birds are used more frequently in poetry than in any other genre because they can be incorporated more easily in the minute imagery that makes up the basic stuff of poetry than in the border elements of plot and character upon which poem and fiction depend.



Thus, the depiction of birds in poetry occurs in different ways. A) To explain the poetic background. B) Using natural element [here birds] as metaphors. C) Source or energizer to create feelings and emotions. D) Narrating natural objects for the sake of narration only. E) For the sake of emotional expression. Beyond this classification in the involvement of nature in poetry, the presence of nature and its elements including birds set a trend in the fulfillment of poetic ecstasy. The recognition, recapture and defense of problems of nature in modern Malayalam poetry has become the trend today. Besides, the world of experience of women, and the Dalit aesthetic sense, environmental awareness also gets a vantage place in recent literature. This we can perceive in a wide range of expressions about nature in the writings of eminent Malayalam poets like N.V.Krishnavarrier, Sugathakumari, Ayyappa Panicker, Sachidandan, D.Vinayachandran, and K.G. Sankara Pillai . They stirred up the course of modern Malayalm poetry in its great strength. The poets could really integrate the beauty of life and the flight of birds. Thus, the waves of their soul and emotions from nature have fluttered across the creative lines of these poets that have become an inseparable phenomenon in Malayalam poetry.

Heronries of North Kerala - 2011 C. Sashikumar, C. K. Vishnudas, S. Raju, P. A. Vinayan & V.A. Shebin C. Sashikumar, Sree Nilayam, Pattanur P O, Kannur 670595. C. K. Vishnudas, Vishnu Nivas, Karimkutty P O, Kalpetta 673121, Wayanad. S. Raju, Kavil Variam, Kodakara, Thrissur. P. A. Vinayan, Pandancheri House, Vemom P O, Mananthavady, Wayanad 670645. V.A. Shebin, Valiyaparambil House, Chiramanangad P.O, Thrissur, Pin-680604. Introduction

Communal nesting places of large water birds are known as heronries. Usually, different species breed at the same place, even on the same trees forming mixed species heronries. Kerala has about 15 species of resident and breeding water birds nesting in various heronries. Protection of heronries is very important for the conservation and management of these species, many of which are integral part of our agricultural ecosystem. Documentation of these heronries, information on the species breeding within our area and knowledge of the current status of our heronries are the first basic steps in the direction of chalking out a conservation strategy regarding these birds. S. Subramanya (2005) compiled most of the information available – many of them contributed by different birdwatchers in Kerala and some from published data – on the heronries of Kerala till that time. In 2006 and 2007, Malabar Natural History Society (MNHS) organized census of the heronries of the north Kerala districts of Kasaragode, Kannur, Kozhikode, Malappuram and Wayanad based on the voluntary work of its members and co-operation of the Forests and Wildlife department, Government of Kerala (Sashikumar & Jayarajan, 2007 and 2008). The survey of 2007 was the most extensive till then and had recorded 4,930 nests of 10 species of waterbirds in 73 sites in the five districts. As part of the Malabar Ornithological Survey 2010 – 2011 – a bird survey project sponsored by the Forests and Wildlife Department, Kerala covering the six north Kerala districts of Kasaragode, Kannur, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Malappuram and Palakkad – we conducted a census of the heronries in these districts in July and August 2011. Methods All the known heronries were listed. An appeal to inform the location of heronries was published in the local newspapers (this was possible for Kasaragode and Kannur districts only) and the new heronries also were added to the list. During the census, each heronry was visited and all information on the number of nests of each species, the number of adult and young birds present, the activity of the birds, details of the location, information of the nest tree, data on the nearby wetlands etc. were noted in the prescribed data sheet. The history of the heronry, disturbances and threats, if any, also were noted. Whenever possible, participation of the local birdwatchers and people was ensured and with this interaction, the problems of the heronry and the problems faced by the local people from the heronry were understood. Results and Discussion 8,677 nests belonging to 12 species of waterbirds from 102 sites were counted during the survey. The details regarding the breeding species of each site in the six districts are given in Table 1.



Table 1. Heronries of Malabar

Median Egret









Distribution of heronries The highest number of heronries (28) and number of nests (3,917) were recorded in Kannur district. Palakkad had the same number of heronries, but the total number of nests was only 865. The distribution of heronries in Palakkad was unique in that all of them were small, scattered and had larger number of nest trees. In Wayanad, there were only three heronries, but they had 766 nests belonging to nine species. Kozhikode had the least number of species as well as nests; this may be due to lesser coverage, but interestingly, the results were similar in the earlier census also. Fig. 1 shows the distribution of heronries in Malabar (number of nests shown in the secondary axis on right). The maximum number of species breeding in any district was nine and the minimum three.

Location of the heronries Table 2 shows the percentage of the location types of the 102 heronries. Evidently, more than 93% of the heronries were situated in Government land; only 7% of the heronry sites were privately owned. This is an interesting situation unique to Kerala. A major part of the heronries were located on trees on the sides of the roads, including National Highways, State Highways and interior roads. Several nest trees stood on busy market places, bus stands and such places where lots of people congregate. The heronries at Kannur, Mahe, Ramanattukara etc. were typical of this type of location. Small towns like Palayad, Sivapuram etc. of Kannur district also had similar sites. Nest site selection in this type of locations created ire in the local people and provoked action against the nesting birds.



Three nest sites were situated in small uninhabited mangrove islets: two of them in the Valapattanam River at Keeriyad and Naniyoor and one in Anjarakandy River at Koduvally. Another islet in Mahe River called Naduthuruthi at Kariyad was inhabited and did not have much natural vegetation. All the three heronries of Wayanad were on the bank of Kabani River and two of them were entirely on bamboo clumps. Table 2. Location of heronries

Species: interesting patterns Twelve species of waterbirds nested in the 102 heronries of Malabar. Indian Pond Heron nested in 91 sites with 3,185 nests and was the most widespread and numerous breeder followed by Little Cormorant with 2,955 nests in 68 sites (Fig. 2). These two species together shared 71% of the total nests in the region (Fig. 3). Rest of the 10 species had a share of 29%. Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Large Egret and Cattle Egret together had a share of less than 1%; all these species nested in one site each only and except for Koduvally where Grey Heron nested, the other sites were in Wayanad. Oriental White Ibis nested only at Panamaram. Little Egret bred in 31 sites and Black-crowned Night Heron and Median Egret in 15 and eight sites respectively. Indian Shag had 191 nests in six sites in Kasaragode, Kannur and Palakkad districts. Panamaram heronry in Wayanad was unique as it had three species which bred nowhere else; it had nine species breeding in all – the highest for any heronry for the whole region. Cattle Egret bred only here and nowhere else in Kerala; Oriental White Ibis bred here and nowhere else in Malabar. At Naniyoor heronry in Valapattanam River, Darter, Median Egret and Little Egret were breeding: this is the first record of these species breeding in the north Kerala districts of Kasaragode, Kannur and Kozhikode. About 50 Asian Openbill Storks were seen perched at the heronry in Naniyoor in August, but there was no evidence of their breeding there.



Globally Threatened species Darter and Oriental White Ibis are classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN. Darter was found to breed at eight sites with 255 nests. For Darter, 1% of the biogeographic population is 40 and the breeding population of adults in Malabar will come to 12.75% of the biogeographic population. The heronries of Klari (Kottakkal) and Randathani in Malappuram district together had 241 nests of this species. Darter seems to be extending its breeding range as indicated by the new breeding records from Kasaragode and Kannur districts. Oriental White Ibis was found to breed at Panamaram where 123 nests were counted. Kumarakam is the only other place where this species breeds in Kerala. At this place, apart from the breeding birds, more than 500 Oriental White Ibis arrived every evening to roost. 1% of the biogeographic population for this species is 250. 1% of the biogeographic population is one of the criteria for declaring a place as an Important Bird Area (IBA). The three heronries mentioned above will fulfil this criterion.

Nest Trees A total of 399 trees belonging to 34 species (excluding mangrove trees and bamboo) were used by the birds for nesting. Table 3 has the list of the species of trees and the number of each. Bamboo clumps standing at the riverbank were used extensively in the heronries at Wayanad and in the three islets, mangrove trees were used as the nesting substratum; these two types are not included in the list. Rain tree (36.6 %) seemed to be the most preferred nest tree, followed by Mango (6.6 %). At least 14 species of trees in the list were usually planted as shade trees or avenue trees by the government departments. The birds must be utilizing whatever trees are locally available, suitable for nest building.



Table 3. List of Nest Trees



Major Heronries There were 21 heronries with more than 100 nests (Table 4). Out of this, four were in Kasaragode, eight in Kannur, one each in Kozhikode and Palakkad, five in Malappuram and two in Wayanad. Four heronries had more than 400 nests. Keeriyad heronry in Kannur had the highest number of nests: 1108 nests belonging to five species. Palakkad had only one heronry with more than 100 nests. As mentioned already, Panamaram with nine species had the most number of species.

Table 4. Major Heronries











The breeding cycle The breeding of the waterbirds coincides with the onset of the southwest monsoon in Kerala. Early nesters arrive at the heronries by the third week of May and the breeding continues till the first half of October. In years of good monsoons, like the one we had in 2011, in many heronries, breeding activities in all stages could be seen throughout the season. It could be that some pairs take more than one brood or the birds which could not utilize the early breeding season nest later in the season. More research is needed to get a clear picture over a period of time. Heronry Census – an overview Table 5 gives an overview of the heronries of north Kerala over the years. The increase in the number of heronries and nests indicates better coverage of the census in north Kerala and not the increase in the breeding population of the waterbirds. By far, the current survey had the maximum coverage in north Kerala compared to the previous two surveys; but several heronries in Palakkad district have not been counted. Complete coverage of all heronries in Kerala shall give a clear picture of the breeding population of waterbird species in the state.



Conservation As is evident, the majority of the heronries are located in government land. As it happens often, many roadside trees are cut every year. At many heronries, the local people considers the nesting birds as a nuisance and often drive them away even before the commencement of the breeding season. This is a serious problem, apart from instances of killing for the pot. Acknowledgements We express our since gratitude to the Forests and Wildlife Department, Government of Kerala for initiating the Malabar Ornithological Survey as part of which the heronry survey was done. P C Rajeevan helped us to conduct the survey at Kannur and Kasaragode districts, V Syam at Kozhikode district, Dr Seethikoya at Malappuram district and L Namassivayan at Palakkad district; we are indebted to them. We are grateful to C Sunilkumar of Mathrubhumi daily newspaper, Kannur for his contribution in gathering information on the locations of heronries. References Sashikumar, C and O. Jayarajan (2007) Census of the heronries of north Kerala. Malabar Trogon 5 (1): 2-8. Sashikumar, C and O. Jayarajan (2008) Census of the heronries of north Kerala – 2007. Malabar Trogon 6 (1):14-19. Subramanya, S. (2005) Heronries of Kerala. Malabar Trogon 3 (1): 2-15.

Nectar Feeding Butterflies in the Canopy of Divi Divi Caesalpinia coaiaria (Caesalpiniacea) Rajashree Raju Kavil Variam, Kodakara Thrissur Introduction

Though butterflies feed on a variety of substances, flower nectar is their prime source of food. Besides nectar butterflies feed on squashed and rotting fruits or other vegetable matter, tree sap, certain rotting animals, minerals from wet soil and varying combinations of all these. Male butterflies of several species aggregate on sodden earth, dung, mammalian urine, mud puddles for mineral requirements. Certain butterflies, especially species of Swallowtails, Whites and Yellows, Blues and some of the Brush-footed butterflies obtain the bulk of their nutritional requirements from flower nectar. A few Brush-footed butterflies feed on pollen. Diet of adult butterflies is even more varied than their caterpillars. But, very little information is available on feeding habits and food resources of adult butterflies compared to that of the larvae (Kunte 2000). This note is on the butterflies feeding nectar from the flowers in the canopy of a Divi Divi plant (Caesalpinia coriaria). Divi-divi is a leguminous tree or large shrub native to the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America, and northern South America. It grows up to 30 ft tall, often much less. Its shape is very contorted in its native exposed coastal sites. In other environments it grows into a low dome shape with a clear sub canopy space. Divi-Divi flowers during the warm weather, but the flowers are not very showy. They are yellow in color. Use of flower nectar is probably the basic trait in butterflies, and the slender, flexible proboscis of flower-feeding butterflies is particularly suited to feeding from narrow flower tubes (Barth, 1991). The butterflies do not feed indiscriminately from any flowers that they might find. There are preferences for nectar with specific chemical composition (Kunte, 2000). Butterflies differ in their dependency on nectar for somatic maintenance and reproductive potential (Gilbert 1981).



Observation Butterflies, feeding on the canopy of a Divi Divi (Caesalpinia coriaria) tree in a one acre well wooded homestead situated at Ollur, seven km from Thrissur town, were observed. The canopy of the tree was full of bunches of greenish white flowers and butterflies were actively feeding nectar. Individual flower is very small with a corolla length 0.6 cm. The height of the tree was 8m and GBH was 70 cm. A total of 45 species of butterflies were found during close observation of the canopy in four consecutive days (19 – 22 October 2011). Observations were made from 11.30 - 13.30 hrs (FN) and again from 15.00 - 17.00 hrs (AN). Day 1 and 2 were sunny days and the other two were cloudy. Maximum number of individuals (115) was found on FN of the 2nd day. Butterflies were more active during the sunny days and were less active during the cloudy days. Butterflies were identified through direct observation with the help of a pair of binoculars. In some cases the species were photographed and identified with the help of standard field guides such as Kunte (2000) and Kehimkar (2008). Table 1 shows the number of species and individuals observed during each day.






All the 45 species were classified according to their families. Six of them were Swallowtails (Papilionidae), eight belonged to the group of Whites and Yellows (Pieridae), four were Blues (Lycaenidae), 18 were Brush-footed butterflies (Nymphalidae) and nine were Skippers (Hesperiidae). List of the species and their numbers found on each day is shown in Table 2.



The numbers given in the table are the number of individuals observed. The actual number of individuals that visited the tree could be much more because I could observe only one side of the canopy which was visible from the terrace of my house from where I made the observations. Certain species of butterflies were actively feeding for whole day time and in all days. There were nine such species: Blue Tiger, Dark Blue Tiger, Double Banded Crow, Brown King Crow, Common Crow, Tamil Yeoman, Great Eggfly, Common Cerulean and Tailed Jay. Majority appeared on the canopy at irregular intervals. Common Lascar, Common Four-ring,



Common Palmfly, Striped Tiger, Common Albatross and One-spot Grass Yellow were observed only once. Some of the butterflies occasionally visited the flowers of Bauhinia purpurea adjacent to the Divi Divi tree. Most of the Skippers were active during the evening hours. Chestnut Bob and Suffused Snowflat were observed only during the evening hours. Certain Blue Tigers in groups (a group of 3-4 and 4-5) and as single were seen resting on the twigs for 5 to 15 minutes after which they started feeding again. I could also observe mating/courtship flight of 2 -3 pairs of Blue Tigers each day. Many migratory species were observed among the butterflies in the canopy of Divi Divi . Seventeen out of the 45 species observed are known to migrate. The list of the species is given below. 1. Blue Tiger (Tirumala limniace) 2. Dark Blue Tiger (Tirumala septentrionis) 3. Striped Tiger (Danaus genutia) 4. Glossy Tiger (Parantica aglea) 5. Double Banded Crow (Euploea Sylvester) 6. Brown King Crow (Euploea klugii) 7. Common Crow (Euploea core) 8. Chocolate Pansy (Junonia (Precis) iphit) 9. Great Eggfly (Hypolimnas bolina) 10. Common Rose (Pachliopta aristolochiae) 11. Crimson Rose (Pachliopta hector) 12. Common Grass Yellow (Eurema hecabe) 13. Mottled Emigrant (Catopsilia pyranthe) 14. Common Emigrant (Catopsilia Pomona) 15. Common Albatross (Appias albina) 16. Brown Awl (Badamia exclamationis) 17. Small Banded Swift (Pelopidas mathias) (known to migrate locally) Divi Divi tree at the house yard at Ollur normally flowers during October of every year (after the southwest monsoon). This year it started flowering in the first week of Octobe; only a few butterflies were found feeding at that time. By third week of October, the canopy was full of flowers and butterflies. Last year (2010) also, there were lots of butterflies in the canopy during the first week of October and I had counted 27 species of butterflies. List of the species observed in 2010 is given in Table 3.



Comparison of the data of the two years is not possible as no detailed observation was carried out in 2010. But some species like Palm Bob, Common Flat, Common Leopard and Pea Blue were absent in 2011. More observation on such assemblage of various species of butterflies in the canopy of different flowering trees of our area would be interesting as there are not many studies on butterflies in the canopy (Schulze et al. 2001). References Barth, F G. 1991. Insects and flowers, the biology of a partnership. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. DeVries, P.J. 1988. Stratification of fruit-feeding nymphalid butterflies in a Costa Rican rainforest. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 26: 98–108. Gilbert, L. E. 1981. The biology of communities. – In R. I. Vane-Wright & P. R. Ackery (eds.), The Biologyof Butterfl ies, pp. 41–54. − Academic Press, London. Isaac Kehimkar, 2008. The Book of Indian Butterflies, BNHS , Bombay Krushnamekh Kunte, 2000. Butterflies of Peninsular India, University Press, Hyderabad. Schulze, C.H., Linsenmair, K.E. & Fiedler, K. (2001). Understorey versus canopy – patterns of vertical stratification and diversity among Lepidoptera in a Bornean rainforest. Plant Ecology 153: 133-152.

Occurrence of the Anaimalai Gecko Hemidactylus anamallensis Gunther, 1875 from Chembra, Wayanad, Kerala Vivek Philip Cyriac*, Arjun C.P. and Tijo. K. Joy Centre for Wildlife Studies, College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Pookode, Wayanad, Kerala *

The genus Hemidactylus is a widely distributed and the second most specious genus among the geckkonine lizards of the world (Carranza and Arnold, 2006; Giri, 2008; Giri 2009). It occurs in the old world tropics, the Mediterranean and also in the tropical America (Smith, 1935; Giri et al. 2009). In India this genus is presently represented by 28 species (Rohini and Karanat, 2010). Although this genus is one of the most explored groups among Indian geckos, nothing much is known about their distribution and natural history. Hemidactylus anamallensis was described by Günther (1875) as Gecko anamallensis based on specimens from Anaimalai Hills. It was later placed under the genus Hoplodactylus by Boulenger (1885). Later Smith (1933) assigned it to a new genus called Dravidagecko. Subsequently it was shown that Dravidagecko is a Gekkonine gecko while Hoplodactylus is a diplodactyline gecko (Underwood, 1954; Kluge 1967). Bauer and Russell (1875) later placed this gecko in the Genus Hemidactylus based on its digital structure. Recent phylogenetic studies on the Indian Hemidactylus by Rohini and Karanth (2010) showed that H.anamallensis is basal to all other Hemidactylus and its allocation to this genus was again questioned. This gecko is known to be present in the hill ranges of Anaimalai, Palni, Tirunelveli and Eravikulam (Smith, 1935; Murthy, 1985; Das 2002). During a study of the reptiles of Chembra peak of Mepadi forest range, two specimens of Hemidactylus geckos were observed on the walls of an abandoned building. Both specimens were caught, photographed and all necessary scalation details and measurements were collected. On examination both the geckos were found to be female; one was gravid with two eggs. The geckos were then released back in the same locality. The species was later confirmed as Hemidactylus anamallensis. The species was identified as Hemidactylus anamallensis based on its overall grayish brown colouration, marbled with dark brown. The tail was thick at the base, cross-barred with dark brown and covered with small scales. Head was depressed and was covered with small granular scales. Rostral was without median groove, nasal in contact with the rostral and the first labial. Ventral scales were imbricate and smooth; Mentum was sub-triangular with 2 pairs of post mentals, the first pair in contact with each other, Subcaudals enlarged and uniform. This species is easily differentiated from all other Hemidactylus by the presence of undivided scansors on the toes. The measurements and pholidosis of the two specimens are provided in Table 1. The geckos were found in an abandoned building at the base of Chembra peak (11˚32'19”N 76˚05'15”) at an elevation of about 1090m ASL. These geckos are sympatric with H. brookii and Cnemaspis sp. Though some authors consider H. anamallensis to be widely distributed in the forests of the Western Ghats (Murthy, 1990; Daniel, 1983), their exact locality is not known and its distribution in the Western Ghats is poorly understood. The present report forms the first record of this species from Wayanad District, not mentioned by Thomas & Easa 1997, suggesting that the region is still largely unexplored with regard to the Herpetofauna. Acknowledgement We thank the Kerala Forest Department and their staff for permission. Our special thanks to the Mepadi Forest



Range Officer, Shri Ranjith for providing all facilities and for supporting us during the study and Dr. Anil Zachariah for his support and encouragement during field work.

Table1: Morphometric Data of Hemidactylus anamallensis from Chembra, Wayanad

Hemidactylus anamallensis from Chembra, Wayanad; Inset showing undivided lamellae of the left leg References Bauer, A.M. & A.P. Russell.1995. The systematic relationship of Dravidagecko anamallensis Günther .1875. Asiatic Herpetological Research, 6: 30-35 Carranza, S. & Arnold, E.N. 2006. Systematics, biogeography, and evolution of Hemidactylus geckos (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) elucidated using mitochondrial DNA sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 38, 531–545. Giri, V. B. & A.M. Bauer. 2008. A new ground-dwelling Hemidactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from Maharashtra, with a key to the Hemidactylus of India. Zootaxa 1700:21–34. Murthy, T.S.N. 1990. A Field Book of Lizards of India. Records of Zoological Survey of India, Occasional Papers 115: 1-122. Rohini Bansal and K. Praveen Karanth. 2010. Molecular phylogeny of Hemidactylus geckos (Squamata: Gekkonidae) of the Indian subcontinent reveals a unique Indian radiation and an Indian origin of Asian house geckos, Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 57: 459-465 Smith, M.A.1935. The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma: Reptilia and Amphibia. Vol. 2: Sauria. Taylor & Francis, London. Thomas, J., J. Sabu & P. S. Easa. 1997. Status and distribution of reptiles in Wyanad, Kerala. Cobra 28: 25-30.



An Updated Checklist of Butterflies of Kerala with their Malayalam Names Muhamed Jafer Palot1, V.C. Balakrishnan2, Balakrishnan Valappil3& S. Kalesh4 1 Zoological Survey of India, Western Ghat Regional Centre, Calicut- 673 006 2 Neelambari, Kannapurram Post, Kannur – 670 301 3 Nest, Padinhattummuril, Malappuram- 676 506 4 Aswathi, Medical College Post, Thiruvananthapuram- 695 012

Ever since the publication of Keralathile Chithrashalabhangal (Butterflies of Kerala) in Malayalam (Palot et al, 2003) an array of butterfly-watching activities has been undertaken in Kerala. The book had about 150 Malayalam names of butterflies commonly found in Kerala state. In the present communication we have coined new names for the rest of the species pertaining to the state. Thus a total of 316 species were provided with Malayalam names (Table.2). The naming process was initiated at the Butterfly camp conducted at Aralam WLS from 13 – 15 January 2012. The list was also discussed among other senior butterfly-watchers. Of the 334 species of butterflies so far known from the Western Ghats (Kunte, 2011), 316 were recorded from the state of Kerala (Table.1). The family Nymphalidae dominated with 95 species followed by Lycaenidae (93 species), Hesperiidae (78 species), Pieridae (31 species) and 19 species from the family Papilionidae. In the present checklist nomenclature is followed after Gaonkar (1996) and the English names were adopted from Wynter- Blyth (1957). Table.1: Family-wise distribution of butterflies in Western Ghats and Kerala

Table. 2: A checklist of butterflies of Kerala with their Malayalam names


Malayalam Name

Malayalam Name


Spot Swordtail, Pathysa nomius (Esper)

Pottu Vaalvaalan



Fivebar Swordtail, Pathysa antiphates (Cramer)

Varayan Vaalvaalan

hcb³ hmÄhme³


Common Jay, Graphium doson (C & R Felder)

Naattu Kudukka



Tailed Jay, Graphium agamemnon (Linnaeus)

Vira vaalan



Common Bluebottle, Graphium sarpedon (Linnaeus)

Neela kudukka

\oe¡ pSp¡


Common Rose, Pachliopta aristolochiae (Fabricius)

Naattu rose



Crimson Rose, Pachliopta hector (Linnaeus)

Chakkara Shalabham

N¡ cie`w


Malabar Rose, Pachliopta pandiyana (Moore)

Malabar Rose

ae_mÀ tdmkv


Southern Birdwing, Troides minos (Cramer)

Garuda Shalabham



Common Mime, Papilio (Chilasa) clytia, Linnaeus




Malabar Banded Swallowtail, Papilio liomedon (Moore)

Pulli vaalan



Blue Mormon, Papilio polymnestor (Cramer)

Krishna Shalabham





Red Helen, Papilio helenus (Linnaeus)


Np«n¡ dp¸³


Common Mormon, Papilio polytes (Linnaeus)


\mcI¡ mfn


Malabar Raven, Papilio dravidarum (Wood-Mason)

Malabar Raven

ae_mÀ dmh³


Lime Butterfly, Papilio demoleus (Linnaeus)

Naaraka shalabham



Common Banded Peacock, Papilio crino (Fabricius)

Naattu Mayuri



Malabar Banded Peacock, Papilio buddha (Westwood)

Buddha mayoori



Paris Peacock, Papilio paris (Linnaeus)

Chutti mayoori



Indian Cabbage White, Pieris canidia Linnaeus

Cabbage shalabham

Imt_Pv ie`w


Pioneer(Caper White), Anaphaeis aurota Fabricius

Kareera velumban

Icoc shfp¼³


Common Gull, Cepora nerissa Fabricius




Lesser Gull, Cepora nadina Lucas




White Orange Tip, Ixias marianne Cramer


sh¬sN© ndI³


Yellow Orange Tip, Ixias pyrene Linnaeus


aª -sN© nd-I³


Common Jezebel, Delias eucharis Drury




Painted Sawtooth, Prioneris sita C Felder




Plain Puffin, Appias indra Moore

Vella Puffin



Spot Puffin, Appias lalage (Doubleday)

Pulli Puffin

]pÅn -]-^n³


Striped Albatross, Appias libythea Fabricius

Varayan albatross

hc-b³ BÂ_t{Smkv


Chocolate Albatross, Appias lyncida Cramer

Chocolate albatross

tNm¡ vteäv BÂ_t{Smkv


Common Albatross, Appias albina Felder




Lesser Albatross, Appias wardii (Moore)

Pulli albatross

]pÅn- BÂ_t{Smkv


Psyche, Leptosia nina Fabricius

Pottu vellaatti



Great Orange-Tip, Hebomoia glaucippe Linnaeus


sN© nd-I³

36 37

Small Salmon Arab, Colotis amata Fabricius Large Salmon Arab, Colotis fausta (Olivier)

Chembazhukka shalabham Vanchembazhukka shalabham

sN¼-gp-¡ ie`w h³sN¼-gp-¡ ie`w


Small Orange-Tip, Colotis etrida Boisduval


sNdp-tNmc-¯p-© -³


Plain Orange-Tip, Colotis eucharis Fabricius


-tNmc-¯p-© -³


Crimson-Tip, Colotis danae (Fabricius)


sN-t-© -mc-¯p-© -³


Dark Wanderer, Pareronia ceylanica (C & R Felder)

Irulan naadodi

Ccp-f³ \mtSmSn


Common Wanderer, Pareronia valeria (Cramer)



43 44

Common Emigrant, Catopsilia pomona Fabricius Mottled Emigrant, Catopsilia pyranthe Latreille

Manha thakaramuthi Thakaramuthi

aª -¯-I-c-ap¯n X-I-c-ap¯n


Small Grass Yellow, Eurema brigitta Cramer

Cherumanha paappathi

Ip-ª n]m-¸m¯n


Spotless Grass Yellow, Eurema laeta Boisduval

Dwiroopi manha paappathi

Zzncq]n aª ]m-¸m¯n


Common Grass Yellow, Eurema hecabe Linnaeus

Manha paappathi

aª ]m-¸m¯n


Three-Spot Grass Yellow, Eurema blanda Boisduval

Mupottan Paappathi

aps¸m«³- ]m¸m¯n


Nilgiri Grass Yellow, Eurema nilgiriensis C & R Felder

Nilgiri Paappathi

\o-eKncn ]m¸m¯n


Nilgiri Clouded Yellow, Colias nilgiriensis Felder & Felder Peethambaran



Common Beak Libythea lepita (Moore)

Chundan shalabham



Club Beak Libythea myrrha(Godart)

Gadha chundan




Subfamily Danainae 53

Glassy Tiger, Parantica aglea (Stoll)


sXfn-\o-e-¡ -Sph


Nilgiri Tiger, Parantica nilgiriensis (Moore)

Nilgiri kaduva

\o-eKncn¡ -Sph


Dark Blue Tiger, Tirumala septentrionis (Butler)


Icn-\o-e-¡ -Sph


Blue Tiger, Tirumala limniace Cramer


\oe-¡ -Sph


Plain Tiger, Danaus chrysippus Linnaeus


Fcn¡ vX¸n


Common Or Striped Tiger, Danaus genutia Cramer

Varayan kaduva

hc-b³¡ -Sph


Common Indian Crow, Euploea core (Cramer)

Arali shalabham



Double-Branded Crow, Euploea sylvester (Fabricius)

Paalvalli shalabham

]mÂhÅn ie`w


Brown King Crow, Euploea klugii Moore

Aal shalabham



Malabar Tree Nymph, Idea malabarica Moore




Tawny Rajah Charaxes bernardus (Fabricius)




Black Rajah Charaxes solon (Fabricius)

Puliyila shalabham



Blue Nawab Polyura schreiberi (Godart)

Neela nawab

\oe \hm_v


Common Nawab Polyura athamas (Drury)




Anomalous Common Nawab Polyura agraria Swinhoe

Pulli nawab

]pÅn- \hm_v


Southern Duffer Discophora lepida (Moore)


apf-¦ m-S³


Palm King, Amathusia phidippus (Linnaeus)




Whitebar Bushbrown Mycalesis anaxias Hewitson

Pulli thavidan



Small Longbrand Bushbrown Mycalesis igilia Fruhstorfer

Chinna Thavidan



Long-Brand Bushbrown Mycalesis visala Moore

Neeelvarayan thavidan

\oÄhc-b³ -Xhn-S³


Pale-brand Bushbrown Mycalesis khasia Evans

Varayan thavidan

hc-b³ -Xhn-S³


Redeye Bushbrown Mycalesis adolphei (Guérin-Ménéville) Chengannan thavidan

sN¦®³ -Xhn-S³


Red -disc Bushbrown, Mycalesis oculus (Marshall, 1880)


Xo¡ ®³


Gladeye Bushbrown, Mycalesis patnia Moore




Tamil Bushbrown Mycalesis subdita Moore

Thamil thavidan

XanÄ Xhn-S³

78 79

Common Bushbrown Mycalesis perseus (Fabricius) Dark Branded Bushbrown Mycalesis mineus (Linnaeus)

Thavidan Irulvarayan thavidan

Xhn-S³ CcqÄhc-b³ Xhn-S³

80 81

Common Treebrown Lethe rohria (Fabricius) Tamil Treebrown Lethe drypetis (Hewitson)

Malathavidan Marathavidan

a-e´-hn-S³ ac´-hn-S³


Bamboo Treebrown Lethe europa (Fabricius)




Common Threering Ypthima asterope (Klug)


ap¡ ®n


Jewel Fourring Ypthima avanta Moore




Common Fivering Ypthima baldus (Fabricius)


]© -t\{Xn


White Fourring Ypthima ceylonica Hewitson

Velli naalkanni

shÅn- \m¡ ®n


Nilgiri Fourring Ypthima chenui (Guérin-Méneville)

Nilgiri Naalkanni

\o-eKncn \m¡ ®n


Common Fourring Ypthima huebneri Kirby


\m¡ ®n


Palni Fourring, Ypthima ypthimoides Moore

Palni Naalkanni

]f\n \m¡ ®n


Baby Fivering Ypthima philomela (Linnaeus)

Cheru Panchanethri

sNdp-]© -t\{Xn


Tamil Catseye Zipaetis saitis Hewitson


]q¨-¡ ®n


Nigger Orsotriaena medus (Fabricius)



93 94

Common Evening Brown Melanitis leda (Linnaeus) Dark Evening Brown Melanitis phedima (Cramer)

Kariyila shalabham Irulan kariyila shalabham

Icn-bneie`w Ccp-f³ Icn-bneie`w



Great Evening Brown Melanitis zitenius (Herbst) Travancore Evening Brown Parantirrhoea marshalli Wood-Mason

Vankariyila shalabham


Eetta shalabham

Cuä i-e`w


Common Palmfly Elymnias hypermnestra (Linnaeus)


Hme-¡ -WvS³


Cruiser Vindula erota Fabricius




Tamil Yeoman Cirrochroa thais (Fabricius)

Marotti shalabham



Rustic Cupha erymanthis (Drury)


hb-¦ -X³


Small Leopard Phalanta alcippe Stoll




Leopard Phalanta phalantha Drury




Indian Fritillary Argynnis hyperbius Linnaeus




Tamil Lacewing Cethosia nietneri Felder & Felder

Lace shalabham

sebvkv ie`w

Tawny Coster Acraea terpsicore (Linnaeus)



95 96


Subfamily Limenitidinae 106

Commander Limenitis procris (Cramer)




Common Sergeant Athyma perius (Linnaeus)




Blackvein Sergeant Athyma ranga Moore

Ottavarayan sergeant

Hä-h-c-b³ kÀPâv


Staff Sergeant, Athyma selenophora (Kollar)

Chuvappuvarayan sergeant

Nph-¸vh-c-b³ kÀPâv


Colour Sergeant, Athyma nefte (Cramer)

Colour sergeant

IfÀ kÀPâv


Common Lascar Pantoporia hordonia (Stoll)



112 113

Extra Lascar Pantoporia sandaka (Butler) Common Sailer Neptis hylas Linnaeus

Pulivarayan Pontha chuttan

]penh-c-b³ s]m´-¨p-ä³


Shortbanded Sailer Neptis columella Moore

Cherupulli Ponthachuttan

sNdp-]p-Ån- s]m´-¨p-ä³


Chestnut-Streaked Sailer Neptis jumbah Moore

Iruvarayan Ponthachuttan

Ccp-h-c-b³ s]m´-¨p-ä³


Yellowjack Sailer Neptis viraja Evans

Mannha ponthachuttan

aª s]m´-¨p-ä³


Sullied Sailer Neptis soma Eliot

Chola ponthachuttan

tNme s]m´-¨p-ä³


Clear Sailer Neptis nata Moore

Ilam ponthachuttan



Southern Sullied Sailer Neptis clinia Moore

Theckan Chola ponthachuttan

sX¡ ³ tNme s]m´-¨p-ä³


Clipper Parthenos sylvia (Cramer )




Common Baron Euthalia aconthea (Cramer)




Gaudy Baron Euthalia lubentina (Cramer)




Baronet Euthalia nais (Forster)




Blue Baron Euthalia telchinia (Ménétriés)

Neela kanithozhan

\oe I\n-t¯m-g³

125 126

Grey Count Tanaecia lepidea (Butler) Redspot Duke Dophla evelina (Stoll)

Pezhalan Kanirajan

t]gm-f³ I\ncm-P³


Common Map Cyrestis thyodamas Boisduval,

Bhoopada shalabham

`q]S ie`w


Angled Castor Ariadne ariadne Linnaeus




Common Castor Ariadne merione(Cramer)




Joker Byblia ilithyia (Drury)


tPm¡ À


Black Prince Rohana parisatis (Westwood)




Painted Courtesan Euripus consimilis (Westwood)



133 134

Indian Red Admiral Vanessa indica (Herbst) Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Linnaeus)

Cholarajan Chithritha

tNme-cm-P³ Nn{XnX


Blue Admiral Kaniska canace (Linnaeus)




Gray Pansy Junonia atlites (Linnaeus)


h-bÂt¡ mX




Peacock Pansy Junonia (Precis) almana (Linnaeus)


abn¡ ®n


Yellow Pansy Junonia (Precis) hierta (Fabricius)




Chocolate Pansy, Junonia (Precis) iphita (Cramer)

Chocolate shalabham

tNm¡ vteäv ie`w


Lemon Pansy Junonia (Precis) lemonias (Linnaeus)


]pÅn-¡ p-dp-¼³


Blue Pansy Junonia orithya (Linnaeus)

Nila neeli



Great Eggfly Hypolimnas bolina (Linnaeus)




Danaid Eggfly Hypolimnas misippus (Linnaeus)




South Indian Blue Oakleaf Kallima horsfieldi Kollar

Okkila shalabham

Hm¡ n-e -i-e`w


Autumnleaf Doleschallia bisaltide malabarica (Cramer)

Suvarna Okkilashalabham

kphÀ® Hm¡ n-e -i-e`w

Family: Lycaenidae 146

Plum Judy, Abisara echerius (Moore)


B«¡ m-cn

147 148

Apefly Spalgis epius (Westwood) Red Pierrot Talicada nyseus Guérin

Markkada shalabham Chenkomali

aÀ¡ Si-e`w sNt¦m-amfn


Common Pierrot Castalius rosimon Fabricius




Dark Pierrot Castalius ananda de Nicéville

Irulan komali

Ccp-f³ tImamfn


Angled Pierrot Caleta caleta Hewitson

Varayan komali

hc-b³ tImamfn


Banded Blue Pierrot Discolampa ethion Westwood

Neelavarayan komali

\oe-h-c-b³ tImamfn


Zebra Blue Syntarucus plinius (Fabricius)

Zebra neeli



Bright Babul Blue Azanus ubaldus Cramer




Dull Babul Blue Azanus uranus Butler

Irulan karivelaneeli

a§ nb Icnthe\oen


African Babul Blue Azanus jesous Guérin-Meneville

Kaappiri karivelaneeli

Im¸ncn Icnthe\oen


Quaker Neopithecops zalmora Butler




Malayan Megisba malaya (Horsfield)




Plain Hedge Blue Celastrina lavendularis (Moore)




Common Hedge Blue Acytolepis puspa (Horsfield)

Naattu velineeli


161 162

Hampson’s Hedge Blue Acytolepis lilacea (Hampson) White Hedge Blue Akasinula akasa (Horsfield)

Kaattuvelineeli Velli velineeli

Im«p-th-en-\oen shÅn-\oen


Whitedisc Hedge Blue Cyaniris albidisca Moore

Irulan velineeli

Ccp-f³ th-en-\oen


Lime Blue Chilades laius (Cramer)




Indian Cupid Chilades parrhasius (Fabricius)




Small Cupid Chilades contracta (Butler)




Dark Grass Blue Zizeeria lysimon (Hübner)

Irulan pulneeli

Ccqf³ ]pÂ\oen


Lesser Grass Blue Zizeeria otis (Fabricius)




Pale Grass Blue Pseudozizeeria maha (Kollar)




Tiny Grass Blue Zizula gaika (Trimen)

Chinna pulneeli



Grass Jewel Freyeria trochylus (Freyer)




Gram Blue Euchrysops cnejus (Fabricius)

Payar neeli



Plains Cupid Edales pandava (Horsfield)




Ciliate Blue Anthene emolus (Godart)




Pointed Ciliate Blue Anthene lycaenina (C Felder)




Forget-me-not Catochrysops strabo (Fabricius)




Silver Forget-me-not Catochrysops panormus (C Felder)




Peablue Lampides boeticus (Linnaeus)

Pattani neeli





Dark Cerulean Jamides bochus Stoll

Karimbottu vaalaatti

Icn-s¼m«p hmem«n


Common Cerulean Jamides celeno (Cramer)

Pottu vaalatti



Metallic Cerulean Jamides alecto (Felder)

Kaattu pottuvaalaatti

Im«p s]m«phm-em«n


Large Four-line Blue Nacaduba pactolus (Felder)

Van chathur varayanneeli

h³ NXpÀhcb³\oen


Pale Four-line Blue Nacaduba hermus (Felder)

Chathur varayanneeli



Pointed Lineblue Nacaduba helicon Felder

Muna varayanneeli

ap\ hcb³\oen


Transparent Six-line Blue Nacaduba kurava (Moore)

Thelivarayan neeli

sXfn hcb³\oen


Opaque Six-line Blue Nacaduba beroe (Felder & Felder)




Rounded Six-line Blue Nacaduba berenice (Herrich-Schäffer)

Mothira Varayanneeli

tamXnc hcb³\oen


Common Lineblue Prosotas nora (Felder)

naattu varayan neeli

\m«p hcb³\oen


Tailless Lineblue Prosotas dubiosa (Semper)


hmenà hcb³\oen


White-tipped Lineblue Prosotas noreia (Felder)

Velli varayanneeli



Dingy Lineblue Petrelea dana (De Nicéville)

Irul varayan neeli

CcpÄ hcb³\oen


Indian Sunbeam Curetis thetis (Drury)




Shiva’s Sunbeam Curetis siva Evans

Shiva suryashalabham

inh kqcy-i-e`w


Toothed Sunbeam Curetis dentata Moore

Muna suryashalabham

ap\ kqcy-i-e`w


Silverstreak Blue Iraota timoleon Stoll




Leaf Blue Horsfieldia anita Moore



197 198

Many-tailed Oak-Blue Thaduka multicaudata Moore Large Oakblue Arhopala amantes (Hewitson)

Thalirneeli Van Thalirneeli

XfnÀ\oen h³XfnÀ\oen


Aberrant Oakblue Arhopala abseus (Hewitson)

Apoorva Thalirneeli

A]qÀh XfnÀ\oen


Dark Broken-Band Oakblue Arhopala atrax (Hewitson)

Murivarayan Thalirneeli

apdnhcb³ XfnÀ\oen


Centaur Oakblue Nilasera centaurus (Fabricius)

Yavana Thalirneeli

bh\ XfnÀ\oen tdmkn XfnÀ\oen


Rosy Oakblue Panchala alea (Hewitson)

Rosy thalirneeli


Tamil Oakblue Narathura bazaloides (Hewitson)

Thamil thalirneeli

XanÄ XfnÀ\oen


Common Acacia Blue Surendra quercetorum (Moore)

Acacia neeli

At¡ -jy-\oen


Silver Streaked Acacia Blue Zinaspa todara (Moore)

Velli acacia neeli

shÅn At¡ jy\oen


Yamfly Loxura atymnus (Cramer)


Ipª nhm-e³


Common Silverline Spindasis vulcanus (Fabricius)




Long-banded Silverline Spindasis lohita (Horsfield)

Neel vellivarayan



Plumbeous Silverline Aphnaeus schistacea Moore

Chera vellivarayan

tNcm shÅnhcb³

210 211

Abnormal Silverline Aphnaeus abnormis Moore Common Shot Silverline Aphnaeus ictis Hewitson

Komali vellivarayan Chemban vellivarayan

tImamfn shÅnhcb³ sN¼-³ shÅn-h-c-b³


Scarce Shot Silverline Aphnaeus elima Moore

Neelachemban vellivarayan

\oesN¼-³ shÅn-h-c-b³


Lilac Silverline Aphnaeus lilacinus Moore

Lilac vellivarayan

sseemIv shÅnhcb³


Redspot Zesius chrysomallus Hübner

Chonan shalabham

tNmW³ ie`w


White Royal Pratapa deva (Moore)



216 217

Silver Royal Ancema blanka (De Nicéville) Broadtail Royal Creon cleobis (Godart)

Rajathambari Vaalan Neelambhari

cPXmw_cn hme³ \oemw_cn


Plains Blue Royal Tajuria jehana Moore

Samathala Neelambhari

kaXe \oemw_cn


Peacock Royal Tajuria cippus (Fabricius)




Spotted Royal Tajuria maculata Hewitson




Branded Royal Ops melastigma (De Nicéville)

Varayan Neelambhari

hcb³ \oemw_cn


Banded Royal Charana jalindra Moore


]« \oemw_cn


Common Imperial Cheritra freja (Fabricius)




Monkey Puzzle Rathinda amor (Fabricius)




Common Onyx Horaga onyx (Moore)




Brown Onyx Horaga viola Moore

Kaatu Gomedakam




227 228

Common Tinsel Catapaecilma elegans Druce Orchid Tit Chliaria othona (Hewitson)

Manivarnnan Orchid neeli

aWnhÀW³ HmÀ¡ nUv \oen


Nilgiri Tit Chliaria nilgirica (Moore

Nilgiri neeli

\oeKncn \oen


Fluffy Tit Zeltus etolus (Fabricius)




Cornelian Deudorix epijarbas (Moore)



232 233

Common Guava Blue Virachola isocrates (Fabricius) Large Guava Blue Virachola perse (Hewitson)

Peraneeli Vanperaneeli

t]c\oen h³ t]c\oen


Indigo Flash Rapala varuna (Hewitson)

Indigo flash

C³UntKm ^vfmjv


Slate Flash Rapala schistacea (Moore)

Slate flash

tÉäv ^vfmjv


Common Red Flash Rapala iarbus (Fabricius)

Red flash



Malabar Flash Vadebra lankana (Moore)

Sahyadri Flash

klym{Zn ^vfmjv


Plane Bindahara phocides (Fabricius)



Thavidan Aara

Xhn-S³ Bc

Family: Hesperiidae 239

Brown Awl Badamia exclamationis (Fabricius)


Pale Green Awlet Bibasis gomata (Moore)

Varayan Aara



Orange-striped Awl/Orange Awlet Bibasis jaina (Moore)

Ponnara shalabham

s]m¶mc ie`w


Orangetail Awl/Pale Green Awlet Bibasis sena (Moore)

Theevalan Aara


243 244

Indian Awlking, Choaspes benjaminii (Guérin-Meneville) Common Awl Hasora badra (Moore)

Aararajan Pulliyara

BccmP³ ]pÅnbmc


Common Banded Awl Hasora chromus (Cramer)




White Banded Awl Hasora taminatus (Hübner)

Vellivarayan aara

shÅn hcb\mc


Plain Banded Awl Hasora vitta (Butler)







Hesperiinae 248

Dingy Scrub-Hopper Aeromachus dubius


(Elwes & Edwards) Pygmy Grass/Scrub-Hopper Aeromachus pygmaeus (Fabricius)


Bush Hopper Ampittia dioscorides (Fabricius)




Coorg Forest Hopper Arnetta mercara (Evans)




Vindhyan Bob Arnetta vindhiana (Moore)

Vindhyan Kaattuthullan

hnÔy³ Im«pXpų


Paintbrush Swift Baoris farri (Moore)

Eetta sharashalabham



Hedge/Hampson’s Hedge-Hopper Baracus vittatus (Felder) Velithullan



Beavan’s Swift Pseudoborbo bevani (Moore)

Thavidan sharashalabham



Rice Swift Borbo cinnara (Wallace)

Shara shalabham



Kanara Swift Caltoris canaraica (Moore)

Kanara sharashalbham

Im\d ic-i-e`w


Blank Swift Caltoris kumara (Moore)

Pottilla sharashalabham

s]m«nÃm ic-i-e`w


Philippine Swift Caltoris philippina (Herrich-Schäffer)

Philippine sharashalabham

^nenss¸³ ic-i-e`w


Wax Dart Cupitha purreea (Moore)


sabvsagp¡ ³


Palm Redeye Erionota thrax (Linnaeus)




Giant Redeye Gangara thyrsis (Fabricius)




Indian/Ceylon Ace Halpe homolea (Hewitson)

Manhavarayan Sharavegan

aª hcb³ icthK³


Moore’s Ace Halpe porus (Mabille)

Vellavayaran sharavegan

shÅhcb³ icthK³

265 266

Chestnut Bob Iambrix salsala (Moore) Common Redeye Matapa aria (Moore)

Chengurumbhan Chenganni

sN¦p-dp-¼³ sN¦®n


Restricted Demon Notocrypta curvifascia (Felder & Felder) Pullichhathan



C Banded Demon Notocrypta paralysos


(Wood-Mason & de Nicéville) African Straight/Straight Swift Parnara naso (Fabricius)

Varayan chathan Nervarayan sharashalabham

hc-b³ Nm¯³ t\Àhcb³ icie`w

270 271 272

Dark Branded Swift Pelopidas agna (Moore) Conjoined Swift Pelopidas conjuncta (Herrich-Schäffer) Dark Small-Branded Swift Pelopidas mathias (Fabricius)

Irulvaryan shalabham Pullisharashalabham Cheruvaryan sharashalbham

CcpÄ hcb³ icie`w ]pÅnicie`w sNdphcb³ icie`w


Large Branded Swift Pelopidas subochracea (Moore)

Peruvarayan sharashalabham

s]cphcb³ icie`w




Contiguous Swift Polytremis lubricans (Herrich-Schäffer) Confucian/Chinese Dart Potanthus confucius (Felder & Felder)

Chemban Sharashalbham



Cheena pottan


276 277

Pallied Dart Potanthus pallida (Evans) Palni Dart Potanthus palnia (Evans)

Ilam Manja pottan Pazhani pottan

Cfwaª s]m«³ ]f\ns]m«³


Pava Dart Potanthus pava (Fruhstorfer)


aª s]m«³





Coon Psolos fuligo (Mabille)




Yellow-Base/Golden Tree Flitter Quedara basiflava


Pseudomaesa/Common Dart Potanthus pseudomaesa

(De Nicéville)

Swarna marathullan



Maculate Lancer Salanoemia sala (Hewitson)



283 284

Bicolour Ace Sovia hyrtacus (De Nicéville) Indian Palm Bob, Suastus gremius (fabricius)

Pandan sharavegan Panankurumban

]m­³ icthK³ ]\-¦ p-dp-¼³


Small Palm Bob, Suastus minuta (Moore)


Ipª n¡ pdp¼³


Tamil Grass Dart Taractrocera ceramas (Hewitson)


aª ]pÂXpų


Common Grass Dart Taractrocera maevius (Fabricius)

Naattu Pulthullan



Dark Palm Dart Telicota ancilla (Herrich-Schäffer)




Pale Palm Dart Telicota colon (Fabricius)

Mannha Panamthullan

aª ]\´pų


Plain Palm Dart Cephrenes chrysozona (Plötz)

Naattu Panamthullan



Southern Spotted Ace or Unbranded Ace Thoressa astigmata (Swinhoe)



Evershed’s Ace Thoressa evershedi (Evans)

Mala sharavegan


292 293

Madras Ace Thoressa honorei (De Nicéville)

Sahyadri sharavegan

klym{Zn icthK³


Tamil Ace or Sitala Ace Thoressa sitala (De Nicéville)

Chemban sharavegan

sN¼³ icthK³


Grass Demon, Udaspes folus (Cramer)

Vella chaathan



Tree Flitter Hyarotis adrastus (Stoll)




Tamil Dartlet Oriens concinna (Elwes & Edwards)

Sahyadri Chinnan



Common Dartlet Oriens goloides (Moore)

Naattu Chinnan


Golden Angle Caprona ransonnetti (Felder)



Pyrginae 299 300

Spotted Angle Caprona agama (Moore)




Spotted Angle Caprona alida (De Nicéville)




Malabar Spotted Flat Celaenorrhinus ambareesa (Moore)




Common Spotted Flat Celaenorrhinus leucocera (Kollar)


\m«p- ]pÅn-¸-c-¸³


Tamil Spotted Flat Celaenorrhinus ruficornis (Mabille )


Im«p- ]pÅn-¸-c-¸³


Tricolour Flat Cogia indrani (Moore)




Fulvous Pied Flat Coladenia dan (Fabricius)




Common Yellowbreasted Flat Gerosis bhagava (Moore)




African Mallow/Marbled Skipper, Gomalia elma (Trimen)

Chemban Thullichadan

sN¼-³ -]p-Ån-¨m-S³


Chestnut/Banded Angle Odontoptilum angulata (Felder)

Varayan parappan



Common Small Flat Sarangesa dasahara (Moore)


Ipª n-¸-c-¸³


Spotted Small Flat Sarangesa purendra (Moore)




Indian Grizzled/Indian Skipper Spialia galba (Fabricius)




Immaculate/Large/Suffused Snow Flat Tagiades gana (Moore)



314 315

Common/Ceylon Snow Flat Tagiades jepetus (Stoll) Water Snow Flat Tagiades litigiosa (Möschler)

Naattuparappan Ilamungi

\m«p-]-c-¸³ Ce-ap§ n


Angled Flat/Black Angle Tapena twaithesi (Moore)





Acknowledgements The authors are grateful to all butterfly watchers of Kerala for their help, knowledge and co-operation in compiling this checklist. The first author is indebted to the Director, Zoological Survey of India, Kolkata and the Officer-in-Charge, ZSI, Kozhikode for facilities and encouragements. References: Gaonkar, H. 1996. Butterflies of the Western Ghats, including Sri Lanka. A biodiversity assessment of a threatened mountain system. A report submitted to the Centre for Ecological Sciences Bangalore. Jafer Palot, M., Balakrishnan, V C and Babu Kambrath. 2003. Keralthile Chithrashalbhangal. Malabar Natural History Society. Kozhikode. 204pp. Kunte, K. (2007): Checklist of Butterflies of Western Ghats, Southwestern India, in K.A.Subramanian. (ed) Diversity and Conservation of Invertebrates in the Western Ghats (In Press). ATREE. , Bangalore. Wynter-Blyth, M.A. 1957. Butterflies of the Indian region. Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai. 523pp.

Orange-breasted Green-Pigeon Treron bicincta at Madayipara 1

P C Rajeevan1 and Dr. Khaleel Chovva2 Pandanchira, Chovva, Kannur; 2Principal, Sir Syed College, Taliparamba, Kannur dist.

On 3 February 2012, at 07.10 hrs in the morning, one of us (PCR) was watching birds feeding on the figs of a Ficus arnottiana tree growing in the crevices of the southern ridge of the laterite plateau of Madayipara. There were about 10 orioles, a few barbets and a group of six green-pigeons. On close observation, PCR found that the pigeons were different from the Pompadour and Yellow-legged GreenPigeons he usually met with on the fruiting trees of this locality and identified them as Orange-breasted GreenPigeons. He could take a few photographs of the birds and confirm the identity after consulting the field guides. Out of the six birds, two were male with orange breast band bordered with lilac on top; grey on the nape of the birds extended well to upper back, vent was rufous and tail grey. PCR, saw the same number of Orange-breasted Green-Pigeons on the same tree on 4 February with Dr Khaleel Chovva, on 5 February with Dr Jayan Thomas and on 6 February with K V Uthaman. Good photographs of the male as well as the female could be taken by the second author on 4 February. PCR visited the locality again on 8 February, but no pigeons were seen but on 12 February, six birds, probably the same group, were seen feeding on the same tree. On this occasion, a male was seen engaged in some sort of a courtship with a female, chasing, making cooing calls and cocking the tail. On most days, the group flew in from south and stayed on the tree feeding for more than an hour. Orange-breasted Green Pigeon is rare in Kerala;

there are very few authentic sightings of this species from Kerala in the past one decade (Sashikumar et al. 2011). This species was not recorded during the Travancore – Cochin Ornithological Survey 2009 and Malabar Ornithological Survey 2010 – 2011 covering most of the forested areas of the state (C Sashikumar, personal communication). Even the historic records suggest that it has been scarce in Kerala: Ferguson found it not common in the 19th century (Ferguson & Bourdillon 1903 – 1904) and Salim Ali did not come across it during his 1 9 3 3 Tr a v a n c o r e – Cochin Ornithological Survey (Ali & Whistler 1935 – 1937). The present one could be probably be the first photographic record of this pigeon from Kerala, though a dead specimen was photographed at Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary by K V Eldhose (Sashikumar et al. 2011) References Ali, Sálim and Whistler, Hugh (1935 - 1937) The ornithology of Travancore and Cochin. Part I. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 37(4) – 39(3) in 7 parts. Ferguson, H. S. and Bourdillon, T. F. (1903 - 1904) The birds of Travancore, with notes on their nidification. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 15 (2) – 16 (1) in 3 parts. Sashikumar, C, Praveen, J, Muhammed Jafer Palot, Nameer P.O (2011). Birds of Kerala Status and Distribution, DC Books.



Checklist of Odonata of Kerala with their Malayalam names Kiran.C.G.1 and David V.Raju2 1

Mayooram, Pulari Nagar, Thittamangalam, Kodunganoor.P.O, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, 2 Valiyaparambil, Kuzhimattom.P.O, Kottayam, Kerala,


The state of Kerala is a narrow stretch of land sandwiched between windward side of the southern Western Ghats and Arabian Sea. Located between 8°18'- 12°48' N latitude. Kerala is enriched with a myriad of flora and fauna. From sea level up to 2694m in high mountains of Western Ghats, the state is truly blessed in terms of invertebrate diversity. An average annual rainfall of 3107 mm and 44 rivers makes this region highly habitable for Odonates. Odonata is one of the ancient groups of large invertebrates having 5740 species globally. In India Odonata comprise of 470 species in 139 genera and 19 families (Subramanian, 2009) Odonata studies in India started with Linnaeus and Selys-Longchamps, and later were taken to its pinnacle by the exemplary works of Laidlaw and Fraser.F.C. The three Volume book, written by Fraser F.C, 'Fauna of British India, Including Ceylon and Burma published in 1933,1934 and 1936 respectively was a milestone in Odonata research in India. Post independence the works mainly revolved around scientists from the Zoological Survey of India and regional Universities with many papers on Odonata distribution, new species descriptions and life histories. Prasad & Varshney (1995) published the checklist of Odonates of India,which was a major landmark in Odonata studies in the last century. After the studies of Fraser, which were restricted to the region north of Cochin, there was a significant lacuna in the study of Odonata in Kerala. This was later being filled-in gradually, by works of Muhamed Jafer Palot, Emiliyamma. K.G and Francy Kakkasery. Peters described the last new species Agriocnemis keralensis, from the state in 1981 from Trivandrum (Peters 1981). The first attempt of coining Malayalam names for 30 common species of Kerala was undertaken by Muhamed Jafer Palot and Babu Kambrath (2001). The Pictorial handbook on common Dragonflies and Damselflies of Kerala by Emiliyamma et al (2005) was the first book on dragonflies of the state. Dr. Francy Kakkassery was instrumental in popularizing common odonates of Kerala in Internet. He also contributed to life history studies of few Odonata in Kerala (Kiran & Kakkasery ,2007). Emiliyamma et al., (2007) documented 136 species on their work on Odonata diversity of the state. Another significant and popular book was Dragonflies and Damselflies of Peninsular India - A Field Guide, (Subramanian, 2009) this contributed significantly to the knowledge on Indian Odonata and helped to bring Odonata watching as an interesting pastime among the masses. Here in this paper we report 147 species from 14 families from the state of Kerala. This is the first exhaustive list of Odonata from the state based on our extensive fieldwork spanning the last 12 years. Checklist of Odonates of Kerala with vernacular names

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

Scientific name Class: Insecta Order: Odonata Suborder: Anisoptera Family: Aeshnidae Anaciaeschna jaspidea (Burmeister, 1839) Anaciaeschna donaldi Fraser, 1922 Anax guttatus (Burmeister, 1839) Anax immaculifrons Rambur, 1842 Anax parthenope (Selys, 1839) Gynacantha bayadera Selys,1891 Gynacantha dravida Lieftinck,1960 Hemianax ephippiger (Burmeister, 1839) Family:Chlorogomphidae Chlorogomphus campioni (Fraser,1924) Chlorogomphus xanthoptera (Fraser, 1919) Family:Corduliidae Hemicordulia asiatica Selys, 1878 Idionyx minima Fraser,1931 Idionyx rhinoceroides Fraser,1934 Idionyx saffronata Fraser,1924

Malayalam Name

English Name

IóXp¼nIÄ kqNnhme³ IóXp¼nIÄ Xpcp¼³ cmP³ tNme cmP³ acXI cmP³ \oe cmP³ Xhn«v cmP³ X¯½Xp¼n kqNnhme³ cmsImXn¨n Xpcp¼³ Nm¯³ aeap¯·mÀ \oeKncn aeap¯³ B\ae aeap¯³ tImac·mÀ Im«p acXI³ Nn¶³ tImacw sIm¼³ tImacw Imhn tImacw

Dragonflies Darners Rusty Darner Donald’s Darner Blue-Tailed Green Darner Blue Darner Dusky Darner Parakeet Darner Brown Darner Ochre Darner Mountain Hawks Nilgiri Mountain Hawk Anamalai Mountain Hawk Daggerheads Indian Emerald Little Daggerhead Rhinoceros Daggerhead Saffron Daggerhead

32 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61

Idionyx travancorensis Fraser, 1931 Idionyx corona Fraser,1921 Idionyx nadganiensis Fraser,1924 Macromidia donaldi (Fraser,1924) Family:Gomphidae Acrogomphus fraseri Laidlaw,1925 Asiagomphus nilgiricus Burmagomphus pyramidalis Laidlaw,1922 Burmagomphus laidlawi Fraser,1924 Davidioides martini Fraser,1924 Gomphidia kodaguensis Fraser,1923 Heliogomphus kalarensis Fraser,1934 Heliogomphus promelas (Selys,1873) Ictinogomphus rapax (Rambur, 1842) Macrogomphus wynaadicus Fraser,1924 Megalogomphus hannyngtoni (Fraser,1923) Megalogomphus superbus Fraser,1931 Merogomphus longistigma (Fraser,1922) Merogomphus longistigma tamaracherriensis Laidlaw,1931 Microgomphus souteri Fraser,1924 Onychogomphus malabarensis (Fraser,1924) Onychogomphus nilgiriensis (Fraser,1922) Onychogomphus acinaces (Laidlaw,1922) Paragomphus lineatus (Selys,1850) Family:Libellulidae Acisoma panorpoides Rambur, 1842 Aethriamanta brevipennis (Rambur, 1842) Brachydiplax chalybea Brauer, 1868 Brachydiplax sobrina (Rambur, 1842) Brachythemis contaminata (Fabricius,1793) Bradinopyga geminata (Rambur, 1842) Cratilia lineata Foerster, 1903 Crocothemis servilia (Drury, 1770) Diplacodes lefebvrii (Rambur,1842) Diplacodes nebulosa (Fabricius, 1793) Diplacodes trivialis (Rambur,1842) Epithemis mariae (Laidlaw,1915) Hydrobasileus croceus (Brauer, 1867) Hylaeothemis indica Fraser,1946 Indothemis carnatica (Fabricius, 1798) Lathrecista asiatica (Fabricius, 1798) Lyriothemis species* Macrodiplax cora (Brauer,1867) Neurothemis fulvia (Drury, 1773) Neurothemis intermedia (Rambur, 1842) Neurothemis tullia (Drury, 1773) Onychothemis testacea Laidlaw, 1902 Orthetrum chrysis (Selys, 1891) Orthetrum glaucum (Brauer, 1865)


sX¡ ³ tImacw \oeKncn tImacw hcb³ tImacw \ng tImacw ISph Xp¼nIÄ s]m¡ ³ ISph ]mdaq¯³ ISph ]pÅn NXpchme³ ISph NXpchme³ ISph sskc{µn ISph ]pg ISph tNme ISph ]pÅnhme³ tNme ISph \m«p ISph hb\mS³ ISph s]cphme³ ISph tNmc s]cphme³ ISph s]cp¦me³ ISph

Travancore Daggerhead Little Daggerhead Stripped Daggerhead Dark Daggerhead Clubtails Fraser’s Clubtail Nilgiri Clubtail Spotted Sinuate Clubtail Plain Sinuate Clubtail Syrandhri Clubtail Kodagu Clubtail Forest Lyretail Spotted Lyretail Common Clubtail Wayanad Bowtail Giant Clubtail Beautiful Clubtail Long Legged Clubtail

hS¡ ³ s]cp¦me³ ISph ISphm Nn¶³ hS¡ ³ \Jhme³ \oeKncn \Jhme³ Ipdp \Jhme³ Nq­hme³ ISph \oÀ ap¯·mÀ tNmchme³ Xp¼n Xo¡ cnaq¯³ Xhn«p sh®od³ sNdp sh®od³ N§ mXn Xp¼n aXn Xp¼n Im«p ]Xp§ ³ hb Xp¼n Icn\ne¯³ Np«n \ne¯³ \m«p \ne¯³ XoIdp¸³ ]m­­³ ]cp´³ \oe \oÀt¯mg³ Icn¼³ NcÂap¯n tNmchme³ Xp¼n hÀ® Xp¼n s]mgn Xp¼n XhnS³ Xpcp¼³ ]p Xpcp¼³ kzman Xp¼n Im«p ]pų sN´hnS³ hymfn \oe hymfn

Malabar Long Legged Clubtail Pigmy Clubtail Malabar Clawtail Nilgiri Clawtail Laidlaw’s Clawtail Common Hooktail Skimmers Trumpet-Tail Scarlet Marsh Hawk Rufous-Backed Marsh Hawk Little Blue Marsh Hawk Ditch Jewel Granite Ghost Emerald-Banded Skimmer Ruddy Marsh Skimmer Black Ground Skimmer Black Tipped Ground Skimmer Ground Skimmer Rubytailed Hawklet Amber Winged Marsh Glider Blue Hawklet Black Scrub Glider Asiatic Blood Tail Blood Tail Estuarine Skimmer Fulvous Forest Skimmer Ruddy Meadow Skimmer Pied Paddy Skimmer Stellate River Hawk Brown-Backed Red Marsh Hawk Blue Marsh Hawk



62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84

Orthetrum luzonicum (Brauer, 1868) Orthetrum pruinosum (Burmeister,1839) Orthetrum sabina (Drury, 1770) Orthetrum taeniolatum (Schneider,1845) Orthetrum triangulare (Selys, 1878) Palpopleura sexmaculata (Fabricius, 1787) Pantala flavescens (Fabricius, 1798) Potamarcha congener (Rambur, 1842) Rhodothemis rufa (Rambur, 1842) Rhyothemis triangularis Kirby, 1889 Rhyothemis variegata (Linnaeus, 1763) Sympetrum fonscolombii (Selys, 1840) Tetrathemis platyptera Selys, 1878 Tholymis tillarga (Fabricius, 1798) Tramea basilaris (Palisot de Beauvois, 1805) Tramea limbata (Desjardins,1832) Trithemis aurora (Burmeister, 1839) Trithemis festiva (Rambur, 1842) Trithemis kirbyi Selys, 1891 Trithemis pallidinervis (Kirby, 1889) Urothemis signata (Rambur, 1842) Zygonyx iris Selys,1869 Zyxomma petiolatum Rambur, 1842 Family: Macromiidae 85 Epophthalmia frontalis Selys, 1871 86 Epophthalmia vittata Burmeister,1839 87 Macromia annaimalaiensis Fraser,1931 88 Macromia flavocolorata Fraser,1922 89 Macromia indica Fraser,1924 90 Macromia irata Fraser,1924 Suborder:Zygoptera Family:Calopterygidae 91 Neurobasis chinensis (Linnaeus, 1758) 92 Vestalis apicalis Selys, 1873 93 Vestalis gracilis (Rambur, 1842) 93 Vestalis gracilis montana (Fraser, 1934) Family:Chlorocyphidae 94 Calocypha laidlawi (Fraser,1924) 95 Libellago lineata (Burmeister, 1839) 96 Rhinocypha bisignata Hagen in Selys,1853 Family:Coenagrionidae 97 Aciagrion hisopa (Selys, 1876) 98 Aciagrion occidentale Laidlaw, 1919 99 Agriocnemis keralensis Peters,1981 100 Agriocnemis pieris Laidlaw,1919 101 Agriocnemis pygmaea (Rambur, 1842) 102 Agriocnemis splendidissima Laidlaw,1919 103 Archibasis oscillans (Selys, 1877) 104 Ceriagrion cerinorubellum (Brauer, 1865) 105 Ceriagrion coromandelianum (Fabricius, 1798)

{XnhÀ®³ hymfn ]hnghme³ hymfn ]¨ hymfn sNdp hymfn \oe Idp¸³ hymfn \oe Ipdphme³ HmWXp¼n ]pÅnhme³ sN¼³ Xp¼n Icn\oeNndI³ ie‘¯pXp¼n Ip¦pa¨ndI³ Ipų Xp¼n ]hng hme³ sN¼³ ]cp´³ Icn¼³ ]cp´³ knÔqc¨ndI³ ImÀ¯p¼n tNm¸³ ]mdap¯n IämSn Xp¼n ]m­­³ hbÂsX¿³ \otcm«¡ mc³ kqNnhme³ kÔyXp¼n \oÀImhe·mÀ ]pÅn \oÀImhe³ \m«p \oÀImhe³ Im«p s]cpwI®³ aª s]cpwI®³ \m«p s]cpwI®³ s]cpwI®³ kqNnXp¼nIÄ acXIXp¼nIÄ ]oenXp¼n Np«n¨ndI³ XW Xp-¼n XW Xp-¼n Im«p XW Xp-¼n \oÀcXv\·mÀ taLhÀ®³ Xhf¡ ®³ \oÀamWn¡ ³ \ne¯·mÀ \oeNn¶³ \oeNp«n ]¯n ]pÂNn¶³ \m«p ]pÂNn¶³ shÅ ]pÂNn¶³ Im«p ]pÂNn¶³ Acp-hn Xp-¼n I\Âhme³ NXp¸³ \m«p NXp¸³

Tricoloured Marsh Hawk Crimson-Tailed Marsh Hawk Green Marsh Hawk Ashy Marsh Hawk Blue-Tailed Forest Hawk Blue-Tailed Yellow Skimmer Wandering Glider Yellow-Tailed Ashy Skimmer Rufous Marsh Glider Lesser Blue Wing Common Picturewing Red-Veined Darter Pigmy Skimmer Coral-Tailed Cloud-Wing Red Marsh Trotter Black Marsh Trotter Crimson Marsh Glider Black Stream Glider Scarlet Rock Glider Long-Legged Marsh Glider Greater Crimson Glider Iridescent Stream Glider Brown Dusk Hawk Torrent Hawk Spotted Torrent Hawk Common Torrent Hawk Anamalai Torrent Hawk Yellow Torrent Hawk Indian Torrent Hawk Fraser’s Torrent Hawk Damselflies Glories Stream Glory Black-Tipped Forest Glory Clear-Winged Forest Glory Montane Forest Glory Stream Jewels Myristica Sapphire River Heliodor Stream Ruby Marsh Darts Violet-Striped Slender Dartlet Green-Striped Slender Dartlet Kerala Dartlet Pygmy Dartlet White Dartlet Splendid Dartlet Blue-Banded Longtail Orange-Tailed Marsh Dart Coromandel Marsh Dart

34 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126

127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147


Ceriagrion olivaceum Laidlaw, 1914 Ceriagrion rubiae Laidlaw, 1916 Ischnura aurora (Brauer, 1865) Ischnura senegalensis (Rambur, 1842) Mortonagrion varralli Fraser,1920 Onychargia atrocyana (Selys, 1865) Paracercion calamorum (Ris,1916) Pseudagrion decorum (Rambur, 1842) Pseudagrion indicum Fraser, 1924 Pseudagrion malabaricum Fraser, 1924 Pseudagrion microcephalum (Rambur, 1842) Pseudagrion rubriceps Selys, 1876 Family:Euphaeidae Dysphaea ethela Fraser, 1924 Euphaea cardinalis (Fraser,1924) Euphaea dispar (Rambur,1842) Euphaea fraseri (Laidlaw,1920) Family:Lestidae Indolestes gracilis (Hagen in Selys, 1862) Lestes elatus Hagen in Selys,1862 Lestes malabarica Fraser,1929 Lestes praemorsus Hagen in Selys, 1862 Lestes umbrinus Selys,1891* Family:Platycnemididae Copera marginipes (Rambur, 1842) Copera vittata Selys,1863 Family: Platystictidae Platysticta deccanensis Laidlaw,1915 Protosticta antelopoides Fraser,1931 Protosticta davenporti Fraser,1931 Protosticta gravelyi Laidlaw,1915 Protosticta hearseyi Fraser,1922 Protosticta mortoni Fraser,1924 Protosticta sanguinostigma Fraser, 1922 Family:Protoneuridae Caconeura gomphoides (Rambur,1842) Caconeura ramburi (Fraser,1922) Caconeura risi (Fraser,1931) Disparoneura apicalis (Fraser,1924) Disparoneura quadrimaculata (Rambur,1842) Elattoneura souteri (Fraser,1924) Elattoneura tetrica (Laidlaw,1917) Esme cyaneovittata Fraser,1922 Esme longistyla Fraser,1931 Esme mudiensis Fraser,1931 Melanoneura bilineata Fraser,1922 Phylloneura westermanni (Selys,1860) Prodasineura verticalis (Selys,1860)

Icnw]¨ NXp¸³ Xo NXp¸³ aª ]pÂamWn¡ ³ \oe ]pÂamWn¡ ³ Icn-bn-e-¯p¼n F®¡ dp¸³ Np«nhme³ XmacXp¼n Cf\oen ]q¯men aª hcb³ ]q¯men Im«p ]q¯men

Rusty Marsh Dart Orange Marsh Dart Golden Dartlet Senegal Golden Dartlet Brown Dartlet Black Marsh Dart Dusky Lily Squatter Green-Striped Grass Dart Yellow-Striped Grass Dart Jungle Grass Dart

\m«p ]q¯men sN½pJ¸q¯men Acp-hnb·mÀ Icn¼³ Acp-hnb³ sX¡ ³ Acp-hnb³ hS¡ ³ Acp-hnb³ sN¦dp¸³ Acp-hnb³ tNcmNndI·mÀ Im«p hncn¨ndI³ ]¨hcb³ tNcmNndI³ ae_mÀ tNcmNndI³ \oe¡ ®n tNcmNndI³ XhnS³ tNcmNndI³ ]mÂXp¼nIÄ aª ¡ men ]mÂXp¼n sN¦men ]mÂXp¼n \ngÂXp¼nIÄ Ip¦pa \ngÂXp¼n sIm¼³ \ngÂXp¼n B\ae \ngÂXp¼n ]pÅn \ngÂXp¼n sNdp \ngÂXp¼n \oe]nSen \ngÂXp¼n sN¼³ \ngÂXp¼n apfhme·mÀ apfhme³ ae_mÀ apfhme³ hb\mS³ apfhme³ Np«nNndI³ apfhme³

Blue Grass Dart Saffron-Faced Grass Dart Torrent Darts Black Torrent Dart Travancore Torrent Dart Nilgiri Torrent Dart Malabar Torrent Dart Spreadwings Davenport’s False Spreadwing Emerald Spreadwing Malabar Spreadwing Sapphire-Eyed Spreadwing Brown Spreadwing Bush Darts Yellow Bush Dart Blue Bush Dart Reedtails Saffron Reedtail Spiny Reedtail Anamalai Reedtail Pied Reedtail Little Reedtail Blue Necked Reedtail Red Spotted Reedtail Bamboo Tails Pale Spotted Bambootail Coorg Bambootail Wayanad Bambootail Black Tipped Bambootail

IcnwNndI³ apfhme³ sN¦dp¸³ apfhme³ aª ¡ dp¸³ apfhme³ ]g\n apfhme³ \oeKncn apfhme³ sX¡ ³ apfhme³ hS¡ ³ apfhme³ NXp¸p apfhme³ Icns© ¼³ apfhme³

Black-Winged Bambootail Red Striped Bambootail Black And Yellow Bambootail Palani Bambootail Nilgiri Bambootail Travancore Bambootail Malabar Bambootail Myristica Bambootail Black Bambootail



Acknowledgments: We are grateful to Francy Kakkassery, Allan Brandon, Punnen Kurien, Abraham Samuel,B. Sreekumar and K.G.Dilip for their valuable inputs which immensely help this work. We are thankful to Muhamed Jafer Palot, E. Kunhikrishnan, K.A. Subramanian, K.G. Emiliyamma, Manoj V. Nair, C. Susanth, Manu.P, Babu Kambrath and V.C.Balakrishnan for their help with the vernacular names. Sincere thanks to S.Kalesh and Sandeep Das for their comments on earlier drafts. Special thanks to Arun C.G and Ramesh M. for their field support. We would like to thank Travancore Natural History Society (TNHS), Thiruvananthapuram and Kottayam Nature Society (KNS), Kottayam for their facilities and encouragement. References: Fraser, F.C (1933-36): The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Odonata. Vol I-III. Taylor and Francis Ltd., London. Emiliyamma.K.G. Radhakrishnan.C., & Muhamed Jafer Palot (2005): Pictorial handbook on common Dragonflies and Damselflies of Kerala. Zoological Survey of India, Kolkata. 67pp. Emiliyamma. K.G., Radhakrishnan.C.,& Muhamed Jafer Palot (2007): Odonata (Insecta) of Kerala, Zoological Survey of India, Kolkata.195pp +8 plates. Muhamed Jafer Palot and Kambrath. 2001. Keralthile Thumbikal- Part-1. (Dragonflies & Damselflies of Kerala- Part-1). Balabhumi (Popular Children's weekly- as a Supplement - Center spread). 14 December 2001. Muhamed Jafer Palot and Babu Kambrath. 2001. Keralthile Thumbikal- Part-2. (Dragonflies & Damselflies of Kerala- Part-2). Balabhumi (Popular Children's weekly- as a Supplement - Center spread). 21 December 2001. Muhamed Jafer Palot and Babu Kambrath. 2001. Keralthile Thumbikal- Part-3. (Dragonflies & Damselflies of Kerala- Part-3). Balabhumi (Popular Children's weekly- as a Supplement - Center spread). 28 December 2001. Kiran C.G & Kakaserry,F (2007):Observations on mating and oviposition behavior of Tetrathemis platyptera Selys 1878, in Odonata: Biology of Dragonflies, ed. Tyagi,B.K. Scientific Publishers, India.349-355p. Peters (1981): Trockenzeit-Libellen ausdem Indischen Tiefland Deutsch Entomologische Zeitschrift (N.F) 28:93-108. Prasad, M &Varshney, R.K. (1995): A checklist of the Odonata of India including data on larval studies. Oriental Insects, 29: 385-428p. Subramanian, K.A. (2009): A checklist of Odonata (Insecta) of India, Zoological Survey of India. 36pp. Subramanian, K.A. (2009): Dragonflies and Damselflies of Peninsular India - A Field Guide, Vigyan Prasar, Noida, India. 168pp. Subramanian. K.A., Francy Kakkassery and Manjo.V.Nair (2011). The status and distribution of dragonflies and damselflies (Odonata) of the Western Ghats. In: Molur, S.,Smith, K.G., Daniel, B.A and Darwall, W.R.T. (Compilers). The Status and Distribution of Freshwater Biodiversity in The Western Ghats. Pages 63-74. IUCN, Cambridge, UK & Zoo Outreach, Coimbatore, India.

Programme conducted John C Smrithi Sangamam. In connection with the 3rd death anniversary of our beloved guru, Prof. John C. Jacob a meeting of the Prathishtanam was conducted at Vadukunda Shiva Temple Auditorium, Madayipara, Kannur district on 15th October 2011. More than 60 members from various parts of Kerala had participated in the programme. Sri. A. Mohan Kumar, Civic Chandran, Sunil Kumar, C., Shivaprasad Master, Bhaskaran Vellur, Vishalakshan Master, G.K. Latha, Hari Chakkarakallu, Asha Hari, Sheeja Mottammal, Pavithran Vatakara, and Dr Jafer Palot spoke on the occasion. Kerala Bird Race 2011 As part of the Kerala Birdrace-2011, sponsored by KeralaBirder (an internet mailing group of birdwatchers), along with The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (HSBC) and Yuhina EcoMedia, MNHS organized a birdrace in north Kerala on 13th November 2011. 16 teams (four members per team) from Kozhikode, Wynad, Kannur and Malappuram districts participated in the contest covering the northern districts of Kerala. The participants included children, young bird enthusiasts, teachers, social workers and nature lovers. They covered regions from Western Ghats to the coast exploring almost all the diverse habitats watching birds. The important birding locations covered during the dawn to -dusk survey by birders were Aralam WLS, Kannavam forests, Janakikkadu, Peruvanamuzhi, Malabar WLS, Periya Reserve Forests, Panamaram wetlands, Kadalundy

Community Reserve, Kattampalli, Chemballikundu, Ezhimla, Vellimuckuchali, Purathur, Kottooli wetlands, Kolavipalam, Puthiyappa beach, Mavoor wetlands, Kackavayal biodiversity centre, etc. As many as 211 species of birds were observed during the survey. The important bird species observed during the bird race were Watercock, Rufous Woodpecker, Ruddy Crake, Sanderling, Shahin Falcon, Drongo Cuckoo, Black-tailed

Godwit, Rosy Starling, Dollar Bird, Booted Eagle, etc. After the day-long bird monitoring all the participating teams assembled in the evening at the Hemlet Hall, Hotel Yara, Calicut for sharing their experiences and ideas and enjoyed a delicious dinner. Shri. V.K. Sreevalsan, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Calicut inaugurated the concluding session. Dr. Vijayakumar.



T.N., President of MNHS presided over the function. Shri. C.J. Thomas of MNHS welcomed the gathering and Shri. Muhamed Rafeek gave vote of thanks. Dr. Jafer Palot, Secretary, MNHS and Shri. Sajikumar, Asst. Conservator of Forests also spoke on the occasion. Prizes were given away to the teams which counted the maximum number of species of birds and to the 'Bird of the day' for a rare bird sighting. The Ist prize was grabbed by Sri. Sasidharan Manekara & team of Thalasserry, Kannur dt, spotting 163 species of birds. Second prize was won by Sri. Roshnath & team of Wayanad with 108 species and the third prize won by Mujeeb Panchili & team of Thamarasserry, Kozhikode district with 86 species. Black-tailed Godwit was the 'bird of the day' and was spotted by Drishya & team of University of Calicut, Tenhipalam, Malappuram district. Turtle Walk at Thaikadappuram beach MNHS in association with Neythal Turtle Conservation Group organized a Turtle walk at Thaikadppuram beach, Nileswaram, Kasaragod on 24-25th December 2011. The participants walked through the beach in the night as well as early morning before sunrise. Though we could not see any signs of Turtle breeding in the

beach, we could see many shorebirds like Green Shank, Red Shank, Common Sandpiper, Sanderling, Brownheaded Gull, Black- headed Gull, etc. Also saw a pair of Black-capped Kingfisher on the beach. A nesting pair of White-bellied Sea Eagle was also sighted at Punchavi Kadappuram on a Casuarina tree. Many sightings of Dolphins were noted near the coastal waters. Sri. P.V.Sudheer Kumar, co-ordinator, Neythal Turtle Conservation Group delivered a talk on conservation of Marine Turtle activities in the beach. Sri. Bimalnath K. G, Shyam, V.and Dr. Jafer Palot Co-ordinated the programme.

Butterfly Study Camp The 11th annual butterfly study camp was conducted at Aralam WLS on 13th -15th January 2012 jointly by Kerala Forests & Wildlife Department and the Malabar Natural History Society, Kozhikode. More than 85 butterfly enthusiasts from various parts of Kerala and Karnataka attended the programme. The programme was inaugurated by Sri. K.V. Uthaman, Former Wildlife Warden, Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary. Sri. K. Gopalan, Asst Wildlife Warden welcomed the gathering. Sri. V.C. Balakrishnan presided over the function and Dr. Md. Jafer Palot, Coordinator, Butterfly Migration Study Project

briefed out the programme. An illustrated talk on “Hesperiids of Kerala� by Dr. S. Kalesh, Director, Travancore Natural History Society and a talk on 'early stages of butterflies' by Balakrishnan Valappil also delivered during the Camp As in the case of the earlier surveys, eight locations such as Valayanchal, Pookundu Colony, Narikadavu, Kuruckathodu, Kariyankappu, Meenmutty falls, Chavachi, and Paripputhodu were selected for the survey. During the three days of survey a total of 148 species of butterflies were recorded from the Sanctuary. The study indicated the dominance of the family Nymphalidae with 43 species followed by Lycaenidae (41species), Hesperiidae (24species), and 15 species each form Papilionidae and Pieridae. The list included five species of butterflies such as Yellow Jack Sailer, Aberrant Oak Blue, Tamil Oak Blue, Peacock Royal, Plain Banded Awl new to the sanctuary. Thus, the total number of species recorded in the sanctuary has come up to 241 after 11 annual surveys. Though many mud-puddling sites of Common Albatross were noted during the survey no migration was noticed this year.


9-11th March 2012


Bird Survey at Aralam WLS, Kannur District

24 March 2012


Pelagic Bird Survey at Calicut coast.

1st April 2012


10th Annual General Body Meeting of MNHS

April- May


Summer Vacation Programmes for students


Malabar Trogon (sept-dec 2011)  
Malabar Trogon (sept-dec 2011)  

A Malabar Natural History Society Book work