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Key Facts About Damselfly

Context:

A team of researchers have discovered a new species of damselfly at the Ponmudi hills in Thiruvananthapuram district of Kerala.

Relevance:

GS III: Environment and Ecology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Key facts about the new species of damselfly
  2. About Ponmudi Hills

Key facts about the new species of damselfly

  • Name: Cliffside Bambootail (Phylloneura rupestris).
  • Group: Belongs to a group known as bambootails, characterized by a long abdomen resembling bamboo stalks.
  • Habitat: Lays eggs in moss beds located in seasonal rills that flow over rock cliffs.
  • Significance: The discovery is notable because, for over 160 years, the genus Phylloneura was considered monotypic, having only one described species, the Myristica Bambootail.
Myristica Bambootail:
  • Population associated with myristica swamps, earning it the common name Myristica Bambootail.
  • Sole described species of the genus Phylloneura.
  • Considered near-threatened on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
  • Endemic to the Western Ghats, recorded only in the area between the Nilgiri Hills and Sharavathi Valley, north of the Palghat Gap.

About Ponmudi Hills:

  • Location: Ponmudi, translating to ‘Golden Hill’ or ‘Golden Peak,’ is situated in the state of Kerala, India.
  • Geography: It forms part of the Western Ghats mountain range, running parallel to the Arabian Sea, and is situated at an altitude of 1100 meters above sea level.
  • Agasthyamalai Landscape: Ponmudi hills are integral to the Agasthyamalai landscape, located at the southernmost tip of the Western Ghats.
  • Biodiversity: The hills are renowned for their rich biodiversity, and they recently became notable for the discovery of the third species of damselfly within this region.

-Source: The Hindu


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