20 Lesser Known Wildlife of Western Ghats Escarpment

The majestic Western Ghats of India or the Great Escarpment of India is home to thousands of rare animal species, many of them are endemic to the region and globally threatened species. Fauna of Western Ghats includes 139 mammal species, Reptiles,birds and Amphibians, some of the endemic Animals of Western Ghats are falls into the category of endangered due to habitat destruction and poaching. Other least known species of animals in Western Ghats also includes Malabar gliding frog,striped hyena,ruddy mongoose,red giant flying squirrel,small Indian civet, slender loris and wild jungle cats.



Pogeyan is a mysterious big cat,possibly a mutant leopard or a large Spotted civet who comes and goes with the mist. The Pogeyan grey big cat may be really a new species of wild cat found only in the rainforest of Western Ghats.

Indian Chevrotain


The mouse deer also known as Indian spotted chevrotain is a small ungulate and the smallest species of deer family in India. Indian Chevrotain has a wide range of habitat including lush forests of Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve and Periyar Park of the Western Ghats.

Nilgiri Marten


Nilgiri Marten is one of the most beautiful and rare animal,endemic to the hills of the Nilgiris in Western Ghats of South India. The Nilgiri marten is a small carnivorous mammal and known to be the only species of marten found in southern India.

Indian Muntjac


Indian Muntjac also called as Red muntjac and Barking deer, is an omnivorous species of deer found in Eravikulam National Park. The barking deer is one of the least known of all mammals in South India, also found in slopes of the Himalayas.

Nilgiri Tahr


Nilgiri Tahr is an ibex or mountain goat, endemic to the Nilgiri Hills of the Western Ghats. This stocky goat is the state animal of Tamil Nadu,inhabits the shola grassland and rain forests of the South India.

Indian Pangolin


Indian Pangolin is a scaly anteater,listed as endangered due to hunting for meat and skin. The slow moving nocturnal mammal found in the plains and hills of Western Ghats and because of illegal trading, Indian Pangolin is on the verge of extinction.

Honey Badger


Honey Badgers have been spotted in large numbers in wildlife sanctuary of Karnataka. This elusive ratel is primarily a carnivorous species and famous for its defensive abilities,mostly hunt frogs,rodents,squirrels,snakes and honey beehive. The Honey Badgers are mostly occurring in and around Biligiriranga Hills,Male Mahadeshwara Hills and Cauvery wildlife sanctuary.

Indian Porcupine


Indian Crested Porcupine is the largest species of rodent, found throughout the forest of South India. The nocturnal mammal of western ghats is protected under the Indian Wildlife Protection Act and one of the least known animal in India.

Malabar Pied Hornbill


Malabar Pied Hornbill is one of the lesser known species of hornbill family,Found in the evergreen forest of Western Ghats. The Malabar pied hornbill has been frequently spotted from Karwar forest, near the river Kali from Karnataka.

Nilgiri Langur


Nilgiri Langur is dark brown and black coated lutung found in the Hills of Nilgiri in Western Ghats. This primate is listed as endangered monkey in India due to deforestation and poaching.

Lion Tailed Macaque


Lion Tailed Macaque monkey is endemic to the rainforest of Western Ghats in South India and characterized as one of the top 25 endangered species of monkey in the world. The lion-tailed macaque is one of the smallest macaque species in India.

Malabar Pit Viper


Malabar Green Pit Viper is a mildly venomous species of pit viper snakes, endemic to Western Ghats of India. This rare and endemic snake among 124 endemic reptiles found in southwestern India.

Purple Frog

Purple Frog species is found only in the Western Ghats of India and listed as one of the endangered species of India. The species is restricted to Palghat Gap and spends most of its life underground.


A new species of gecko found in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra by Varad Giri. Western Ghats mountains of India is known for number of new species of lizard,frog,butterfly and snakes.

Southern Birdwing


Southern Birdwing is a large, colorful butterfly from Swallowtail butterfly family, endemic to Western Ghats. The striking Swallowtail Southern Birdwing butterfly is the largest butterfly of India.

Swammerdami Scorpion

Heterometrus swammerdami scorpion is largest species of scorpion in the world, found only in Western ghats region of India and can be found in Sri Lanka. This Indian Giant Forest Scorpion holds the record for being the world’s largest scorpion.

Malabar Giant Squirrel


Indian Giant Squirrel or Malabar giant squirrel is the largest tree squirrel species in the world and state animal of Maharashtra. The species is endemic to evergreen forests of India but also found in Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.

Oriental Small Clawed Otter

Small Clawed Otter

Oriental Small Clawed Otter is the smallest otter species in the world,mostly found in mangrove forest, freshwater and swamp. This small aquatic animal is evaluated as vulnerable and feed mainly on crab,molluscs and fish.

Stripe Necked Mongoose


Stripe Necked Mongoose is the largest mongoose species in Asia and found only in southern India Western Ghats. They are largest of all the Asiatic mongooses, prefer forested areas,fresh water source,swamps and rice fields.

Malabar Large Spotted Civet


Malabar Large Spotted Civet is one of the species of viverrid found in India,endemic to the Western Ghats. The Malabar civet or Viverra civettina is critically endangered and threatened by habitat destruction.