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An albino Indian Flap-shelled Turtle, Lissemys punctata (Bonnaterre 1789), from Telangana, India

Authors:
  • Forest-PLUS 2.0
  • Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad
REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS • 29: 225–226 • 2022
225
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The Indian Flap-shelled Turtle (Lissemys punctata)
occurs in rivers and lakes in Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka,
Nepal, Bangladesh, and Myanmar (Uetz et al. 2021), and
an introduced population has been found in the Andaman
and Nicobar Islands (Lever 2003). This species is listed in
Appendix I of CITES (2021), Schedule I of the Indian Wild
Life Protection Act, 1972 (https://legislative.gov.in/sites/
default/files/A1972-530.pdf), and as Vulnerable (VU) on the
IUCN Red List (Rahman et al. 2021).
At 1630 h on 1 August 2021, MKV and SKP found
an albino hatchling Lissemys punctata (carapace length 4
cm, width 3 cm, height 1.5 cm, weight 25 g; Fig. 1) near a
freshwater pond in a forested area of Sirinepally, Nizamabad
District, Telangana, India (18.464488°N, 78.273015°E). A
photographic voucher has been catalogued as ZRC(IMG)
2.573 in the Zoological Reference Collections of the Lee
Kong Chian Natural History Museum at the National
University of Singapore. The identity of the species was con-
firmed from the photograph by Sneha Dharadkar, co-founder
of the Freshwater Turtles and Tortoises of India (FTTI).
Albinism is a complete lack of melanin, including the
iris, which is red (Bechtel 1995; Mahabal and Thakur 2014).
Albinos typically have low survival rates because the associ-
ated color defects have negative effects on fitness, feeding, and
reproduction (Krecsák 2008).
This is the first report of an albino Indian Flap-shelled
Turtle from Telangana, India. Other albino Lissemys punc-
tata have been reported from Nagpur, Maharashtra (D’Abreu
1928); Himmatnagar, Gujarat (Vyas 1997); Kozhikode, Kerala
(Palot and Radhakrishnan 2004); Chennai, Tamil Nadu (Cyril
2009); and Pune, Maharashtra (Vaghela and Kamble 2021).
In addition, bright yellow turtles from Belasore, Odisha, and
Burdwan, West Bengal (Jain 2020), appear to be albinos but the
factor responsible for the yellow coloration is unknown.
An Albino Indian Flap-shelled Turtle,
Lissemys punctata (Bonnaterre 1789),
from Telangana, India
Manoj Kumar Vittapu1, Shravan Kumar Poshetty1, Gaini Sailu2, and Buddi Laxmi Narayana3
1HIG-18, Phase II, Ushodaya Enclave, Madinaguda, Hyderabad–500049, Telangana, India
2Krishna Brundavan Colony, House No: 5-100800, Bandamkommu, Ameenpur, BHEL, Hyderabad–502032, Telangana, India
3Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad–50006, Telangana, India (narayana.laxmi8@gmail.com)
Fig. 1. An albino Indian Flap-shelled Turtle (Lissemys punctata) from Sirinepally, Nizamabad District, Telangana State, India (ZRC(IMG) 2.573).
Photographs by Manoj Kumar Vittapu.
HTTPS://JOURNALS.KU.EDU/REPTILESANDAMPHIBIANS
Reptiles & Amphibians ISSN 2332-4961
https://doi.org/10.17161/randa.v29i1.16588
IRCF REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS • VOL15, NO 4 • DEC 2008 189TABLE OF CONTENTS
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FEATURE ARTICLES
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On the Road to Understanding the Ecology and Conservation of the Midwest’s Giant Serpent ...................... Joshua M. Kapfer 190
The Shared History of Treeboas (Corallus grenadensis) and Humans on Grenada:
A Hypothetical Excursion ............................................................................................................................Robert W. Henderson 198
RESEARCH ARTICLES
The Texas Horned Lizard in Central and Western Texas ....................... Emily Henry, Jason Brewer, Krista Mougey, and Gad Perry 204
The Knight Anole (Anolis equestris) in Florida
.............................................Brian J. Camposano, Kenneth L. Krysko, Kevin M. Enge, Ellen M. Donlan, and Michael Granatosky 212
CONSERVATION ALERT
World’s Mammals in Crisis ............................................................................................................................................................. 220
More Than Mammals ...................................................................................................................................................................... 223
The “Dow Jones Index” of Biodiversity ........................................................................................................................................... 225
HUSBANDRY
Captive Care of the Central Netted Dragon ....................................................................................................... Shannon Plummer 226
PROFILE
Kraig Adler: A Lifetime Promoting Herpetology ................................................................................................ Michael L. Treglia 234
COMMENTARY
The Turtles Have Been Watching Me ........................................................................................................................ Eric Gangloff 238
BOOK REVIEW
Threatened Amphibians of the World edited by S.N. Stuart, M. Hoffmann, J.S. Chanson, N.A. Cox,
R. Berridge, P. Ramani, and B.E. Young .............................................................................................................. Robert Powell 243
CONSERVATION RESEARCH REPORTS: Summaries of Published Conservation Research Reports ................................. 245
NATURAL HISTORY RESEARCH REPORTS: Summaries of Published Reports on Natural History ................................. 247
NEWBRIEFS ...................................................................................................................................................................................... 248
EDITORIAL INFORMATION ..................................................................................................................................................... 251
FOCUS ON CONSERVATION: A Project You Can Support ............................................................................................... 252
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226
Acknowledgements
We thank the Telangana State Forest Department for support
and continuous encouragement. BLN thanks the Curator,
Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad, for providing necessary
facilities.
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D’Abreu, E.A. 1928. An albino turtle. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society
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Jain, S. 2020. After Odisha, a bright yellow turtle has been spotted in Bengal.
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bright-yellow-turtle-has-been-spotted-in-bengal-2316867>.
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Article
Full-text available
The records of albino, partial albino, and leucistic individuals among four species of European Viperinae (Vipera ammodytes, Vipera aspis, Vipera seoanei, and Vipera berus) were summarized based on literature records, mu-seum material, reports of field herpetologists and herpetoculturists, and a short description of all reported speci-mens was made. For the first three species only scattered observations have been made (1, 1, and 6 reports), whereas at Vipera berus these defects proved to be more widespread (16 reports), and present an occurrence pat-tern shift to the Nordic countries. Different hypotheses are postulated on the offset geographic distribution pat-tern of albinism and leucism at this species, taking into account the differences in predation pressure and popula-tion densities between populations in Southern and Northern Europe. The possible negative effect of the color defects on the fitness and survival of the specimens carrying them is debated.
Article
A review of reported instances of aberrant colors and patterns in the Indian herpetofauna is presented. A total of 70 instances from Indian States in last more than 120 years have been compiled and analyzed based on published literature and photographs uploaded on web-sites.
Reptile and Amphibian Variants: Color, Patterns and Scales
  • H B Bechtel
Bechtel, H.B. 1995. Reptile and Amphibian Variants: Color, Patterns and Scales. Krieger Publishing Co., Melbourne, Florida, USA.
Record of albino Indian flapshell turtle (Lissemys punctata) from Adyar Wetland, south India
  • R K Cyril
Cyril, R.K. 2009. Record of albino Indian flapshell turtle (Lissemys punctata) from Adyar Wetland, south India. Cobra 3(2): 10-11.
After Odisha, a bright yellow turtle has been spotted in Bengal. NDTV
  • S Jain
Jain, S. 2020. After Odisha, a bright yellow turtle has been spotted in Bengal. NDTV, 28 October 2020. <https://www.ndtv.com/offbeat/after-odisha-abright-yellow-turtle-has-been-spotted-in-bengal-2316867>.
Naturalized Reptiles and Amphibians of the World
  • C Lever
Lever, C. 2003. Naturalized Reptiles and Amphibians of the World. Oxford University Press, New York, New York, USA.
Status and distribution of turtle fauna (Testudines: Reptilia) in the Malabar part of Kerala
  • M J Palot
  • C Radhakrishnan
Palot, M.J. and C. Radhakrishnan. 2004. Status and distribution of turtle fauna (Testudines: Reptilia) in the Malabar part of Kerala, India. Records of the Zoological Survey of India 102: 27-39.
  • S Rahman
  • M F Ahmed
  • B C Choudhury
  • P Praschag
  • S Singh
Rahman, S., M.F. Ahmed, B.C. Choudhury, P. Praschag, and S. Singh. 2021. Lissemys punctata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2021: e.T123802477A3008930. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2021-1.
2021. The Reptile Database
  • P Uetz
  • P Freed
Uetz, P., P. Freed, R. Aguilar, and J. Hošek (eds.). 2021. The Reptile Database. <http://www.reptile-database.org>.
Record of albino Indian Flapshell Turtle from Pune
  • U Vaghela
  • R Kamble
Vaghela, U. and R. Kamble. 2021. Record of albino Indian Flapshell Turtle from Pune, Maharashtra, India. Reptile Rap #209 in Zoo's Print 36(6): 22-23.