Death of a Mother Chameleon

Devang Dave


Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'

Roads and railway lines claim the lives of thousands of wild creatures from elephants and tigers to reptiles and rodents. The vast majority of these wild animals dying on roads are never recorded.

It was a Sunday morning. My friend and I were riding towards Suryamal from Wada-Nashik road. The scenic beauty made us nostalgic and as we got closer to our destination, we saw something on the road. It was a chameleon. Unfortunately, our first sighting of our trip turned out to be that of a dead reptile, victim of a speeding vehicle. It was probably dead for approximately 3 to 4 hours. What was saddening was the chameleon was gravid – she had died along with several eggs inside.

The story does not end here. Further ahead on the same road, we passed by several other roadkills like a buff striped keelback, checkered keelback and beaked worm snake among others. Some kills were in such a bad condition that we couldn’t identify them.

Small things can make a big difference to issues like these. We can begin with driving our vehicle carefully and slowly, regardless of whether we pass through forest patches, ghats or any other kind of a road. If any wildlife is going across, slow down and allow it to pass. It is small changes like these that could help save several lives.

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About the author

Devang Dave

Devang is a wildlife photographer, he loves to capture natural history moments and conserve wildlife through his work.


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