Entomologie, ornithologie et herpétologie : recherches en cours

Entomologie, ornithologie et herpétologie : recherches en cours
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ISSN: 2161-0983


First Record of Leith's Softshell Turtle (Nilssonia leithii) in Satpura Tiger Reserve, Narmadapuram, MP

Sandeep Fellows1*, Sumit Saha2

Leith’s Softshell Turtle, Nilssonia leithii (Family Trionychidae), is a large turtle, known to attain at least 720 mm in carapace length (bony disk plus fibrocartilage flap), and possibly as much as 1000 mm. The species inhabits the rivers and reservoirs of southern peninsular India, replacing the more familiar Indian softshell Turtle, Nilssonia gangetica, of Northern India. The turtle is apparently rare within its range, even within protected areas, which is suspected to be due to a past history of exploitation. Fish, crabs, freshwater molluscs, and mosquito larvae are taken as food, and some numbers are kept in temple tanks, where they are often fed on Hibiscus flowers. At least two clutches of eggs, which are spherical, are suspected to be produced per year. Distribution–India. Restricted to southern peninsular India (Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, and Tamil Nadu) in the Cauvery, Thungabhadra, Ghataprabha, Bhavani, Godavari, and Moyar drainages.