International Journal of Environmental Sciences

Volume 4 Issue 5 2014- March 2014    Pages: 875-889  <<Previous    Next>>

Status Survey of Small Mammals in West Coastline tract of Southern Western Ghats, India

Author Information:

Sanil R*., Shameer T. T., Mohan G., & Ebanasar J.
Department of Zoology & Wildlife Biology, Government Arts College, Udhagamandalam -643 002, The Nilgiris, Tamil Nadu, India.


A comprehensive schedule/questionnaire survey was conducted among the populace of the Coastline districts of Western slope of Southern Western Ghats to appraise the subsistence of diverse small mammalian fauna in this area. For analysis, the coastline districts were considered as three divisions, the Northern end as Malabar Coast, Southern end as Travancore coast and center as Cochin coast. Survey was conducted in every Panchayath revenue division by two to five independent observers by Schedule/questionnaire methods and direct habitat assessment. Along with this a detailed appraisal of the habitat coverage and various pressure to the existing habitat were studied, in order to assess the possibility of existence of small mammals, especially of small carnivores like civets and lesser cats. Threat Index (TI) and habitat vulnerability index (HVI), was estimated based on anthropogenic stress (AS), habitat cover (HC), poaching (P) and opinion of existence (OE). The report implies that Malabar Coast is diverse with almost every sort of small mammal, in particular small carnivores, followed by the Travancore coastline tract. Reason correlates with the continuance of superior habitat cover and moderately lesser threat. From the study it is recommended that the rare and nocturnal animal like rusty spotted cat and fishing cat may exists in these areas, nevertheless, ruling out the possibility of Malabar civet cat. The study is reminiscent of a continuous in depth monitoring of small mammals, especially petite carnivores and to recognize and safeguard the habitats of this animals in view of conservation.

Key words: Coastline tract, Habitat threat, Small mammals, Western Ghats.


© 2014 Copyright by the authors, licensee Integrated Publishing Association.This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (3.0) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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