FIRST SIGHTING AND OCCURANCE RECORD OF KING COBRA (OPHIOPHAGUS HANNAH) IN AZAD KASHMIR THE TERRITORY OF (PAKISTAN)

abu ul Hassan faiz, MIKHAIL F. BAGATUROV, FAKHAR-I- -I-I ABBAS, LARIAB - ZAHRA, TANVEER AKHTAR

Abstract


During the herpetofauna research in Bagh area (central part of State of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan) surveyed from February 2015 to September 2016, we sighted and   recorded elusive species, king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) by using the visual encounter method. The species was crossing road from southern latitude 500 m to 1367 m in the northern parts across river Mahal (33°57'39.15"N 73°47'42.66"E). The species is rear, vulnerable in (IUCN) listed in CITES Appendix II. The documented distribution range of endemic King Cobra is East Asia and Southeast Asia, but was unrecorded in Western Himalayas (Pir Punjal range) of Kashmir (Pakistan).These findings are new distribution records for the species and addition in checklist of ophidian fauna both, for the Azad Kashmir area and Pakistan.


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