Draco - the flying lizard from Thattekad
Category: Birds 'n Animals
I took a stop at Thettekad during the Valparai - Athirapally - Rajamalai trip. Reached there by about 10 in the morning, only to find that the tourist season is not yet started. This means, there will not be any guides to take me around. In spite of that, I decided to check out the bird sanctuary on my own. In hindsight, it turned out to be a good choice!
While, wandering within the sanctuary limits, I spotted something gliding in front of me and landing on the nearby tree. It took me a while to even spot the creature, brilliantly camouflaged by the tree - it was a lizard!
The pics come from the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L telephoto lens. The lens was not ideal in this low light condition. Even in Av mode, ISO-800, f/6.3, I needed a 1/160s exposure. I was not very hopeful to get a sharp picture with the heavy lens handheld at this shutter speed, but was lucky to get one of them reasonably sharp. I was also able to set it against a green background, as the lizard is almost invisible against the tree trunk.
The fliying lizard, belonging to the genus Draco, has folds of skin attached to its rib, with which it can glide consider distances. One distinctive feature of the one I spotted was the yellow throat patch which it keeps flicking. I am not sure of the species, but its either Draco Haematopogon or Draco Dussumieri. Can anybody confirm?
Posted by usandeep
at 11:52 AM
Updated: Wednesday, 4 May 2011 7:37 PM