Oligodon nikhili


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Oligodon nikhili
Species Authority: Whitaker & Dattatri, 1982
Common Name(s):
English Nikhil's Kukri Snake
Taxonomic Notes: Oligodon nikhili was described by Whitaker and Dattatri in 1982 based on a single specimen collected in Western Ghats from Tiger Shola, near Shemaganur, Kodaikanal in Palni Hills, Dindigul district, Tamil Nadu (Whitaker and Dattatri 1982, Whitaker and Captain 2004).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2010-08-20
Assessor(s): Srinivasulu, C., Srinivasulu, B., Thakur, S. & Mohapatra, P.
Reviewer(s): Bowles, P., Das, A., Achyuthan, N.S., Shankar, G., Kulkarni, N.U., Vyas, R., Deepak, V., Jose, J., Sawant, N.S., Aengals, A. & Molur, S.
Listed as Data Deficient since this species is known only from the holotype and has not been reported for over 30 years, and as a result there is still very little information on its extent of occurrence, status and ecological requirements.
1996 Data Deficient

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Oligodon nikhili is endemic to the Western Ghats, India and is known only from the type locality: Tiger Shola, Kodaikanal, Palni Hills, Dindigul district, Tamil Nadu (Whitaker and Captain 2004). There have been no dedicated surveys looking for this species since its description, and it is therefore unclear whether it is more widespread.
India (Tamil Nadu)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is known only from the holotype, collected in 1981 from Tiger Shola, near Kodaikanal, Palani Hills, Western Ghats.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The holotype was collected from roadside in a relatively undisturbed shola forest at an elevation of 1,500 m asl. (Whitaker and Dattatri 1982). It is not known if the species can persist in modified habitats.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is not in use.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): It is not known whether any threats to this species exist.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no known species-specific conservation measures in place for this species. Oligodon nikhili is one of the rarest endemic colubrid of India, known only from the holotype collected in Tiger Shola near Kodaikanal in Palani Hills, Western Ghats in Tamil Nadu. Further survey work is needed to understand its distribution, biology, ecology, population status and trends.

Citation: Srinivasulu, C., Srinivasulu, B., Thakur, S. & Mohapatra, P. 2013. Oligodon nikhili. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 03 September 2015.
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