Sunday, December 8, 2013

Common Krait : The Mysterious killer in Sri Lanka (තෙල් කරවලා)

In rural dry zone in Sri Lanka, sometimes people die in their sleep or die due to sudden respiratory failure. There is one snake behind all these unknown deaths, it's the most venomous terrestrial snake in the island "The Common Krait" also known as "Magamaruwa"(මගමරුවා) which means DEATH ON THE WAY

Terrestrial kraits belonging to the genus Bungarus of sub family Elapinae and family Elapidae. There are 18 krait species including five sub species are currently recognized by herpetologists and in the snake island of Sri Lanka we encounter two species which is the most venomous among them is the common krait. The scientific name of the common krait is Bungarus Caeruleus. In sinhalese it's known as "තෙල් කරවලා " (Thel Karawala), "මගමරුවා " (magamaruwa), and "හබරලා" (Habarala)

Common Kraits are distributed through out the dry zone and some parts of intermediate zone up to 1600m elevation. It is a nocturnal snake.(All Krait species are nocturnal) rare to be seen in day time as it hides under logs, piles or underground rodent holes or any dark cold place. Slow moving and sluggish during day time. if felt threatened it coils up and hide it's head inside the coil and wiggle it's tail as a distraction. but totally different story at night. they are very active and could be aggressive if provoked.

Kraits are easy to identified thanks to the large hexagonal vertebral scales and coloration. same conditions applies to the common krait. Dorsal coloration of the common krait ranges from black to bluish black, purple tint black and sometimes brownish black with 20-25 white band pairs on dorsal body. These white bands are usually paired. juvenile common kraits have bright milky white bands all over their body. Head is indistinct from the body and depressed, looks cylindrical from head to tail. It has a red color tongue and small black round pupiled eyes.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Vine Snakes of Sri Lanka

Vine snakes belonging to the colubridae family with few number of species. In Sri Lanka there are two vine snake species have been identified by herpetologists till now. Vine snakes are well known among the people due to the mythical believes.

1) Green Vine Snake


Green vine snake is a slender arboreal snake belonging to the genus "Ahaetulla". Its scientific name is "Ahaetulla Nasuta" which is the same name sri lankans used to call it. Sri Lankans call it "ඇහැටුල්ලා" (Ahaetulla) or "ඇස්ගුල්ලා" (As gulla) which means the eye plucker, people believe this snake attack to the eye and pluck it off, makes no sense..all these are mythological believes. Since it's an arboreal snake and likes to hang on small tree branches and vines, most of the time people get bitten in face areas. maybe that helped to pop up such a myth among people. The coloration of the snake helps it to blend well with the habitat of the snake. This camouflage is hard to spot and humans are aware of it and gets bitten.

Green vine snake is distributed through out the island except high hill areas. It's a common snake in the land up to 1000m from sea level. Dorsal coloration is mostly bright green although there are nasutas with brownish color (Not Pulverulenta). Green vine snake can grow up to around 150cm in length. At birth baby vine snakes measures around 30cm. There is a small tip at end of the long snout which is easy to identify. Head is covered with elaborately shaped scales. Unlike other common snakes Ahaetulla species have horizontal pupils in their convex eye. The eye sight of Ahaetulla is sensitive to even small movements. Having a sharp eyesight is a characteristic of all arboreal snakes.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Korean Galaxy S4 vs Original Galaxy S4 (For Sri Lankans)

ලංකාවෙ මේ දවස් වල ජනප්ප්‍රිය Phone එකක් තමයි Samsung Galaxy S4 කියන්නේ. ගොඩක් දෙනෙක් S4 එකක් මිල දී ගන්ඩ මේ වෙනකොටත් සූදානම් වෙනවා ඇති. ඔයාල දැකල ඇති රුපියල් 25,000 - 30,000 ටත් S4 එකක් තියෙනවා කඩවල් වල. කව්රුත් මේවට කියන්නේ කොරියන් වර්ෂන් කියලා.මේවා ඇත්තටම කොරියන් වර්ෂන් ද? බැලූ බැල්මටම ඇත්තම Galaxy S4 එකක් වගේ. ඇයි මේවා මෙච්චර ගණන් අඩු? මම මේ ආර්ටිකල් එකෙන් කියන්ඩ යන්නේ මේ phone වල ඇත්ත කතාව.

මෙන්න මේකයි සීන් එක. ඔරිජිනල් කොරියන් වර්ෂන් එකේ මොඩල් නම්බර් එන්නේ HSV-E300 K/S/L කියලා. K, S ,L  වලින් 4G LTE bandwidths පෙන්නනවා. මේ මොඩල් කොරියාව ඇතුලේ පාවිච්චියට හදපුවා. මීට අමතරව Carrier based phones (ex :Show) කීපයක්ම හොයාගන්ඩ පුලුවන්. Anycall වලින් ගහපු S 4 එකක් නම් තාම දැක්කේ නෑ.
ලංකාවෙ තියෙන්නේ මේ කොරියන් phones නෙමෙයි. HDC කියන Chinese Company එකෙන් නිෂ්පාදනය කරන දුරකථන . ඔයගොල්ලෝ එකේ නිල වෙබ් අඩවියට ගියොත් බලාගන්ඩ පුලුවන් කොහොමද ය මේ විකුණන්නේ  කියලා. මේවා අඩු පිරිවැයකින් හා තත්වයෙන් උසස් නැති Hardware දාල හදන හින්ද තමයි මෙච්චර ගණන් අඩු.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Russell's Viper The Ultimate Viper in Sri Lanka (තිත් පොළගා)

I love Herpetology and Snakes, But i also fears two snakes here in the island. One of them is the Daboia Russelii also known as the Russell's viper with the notorious attitude. in Sinhala we call it "තිත් පොළගා" (Thith Polanga) which means like "the dotted/spotted viper" or "ගැට පොළගා"(Gata Polanga), "ධාර පොළගා"(Dhara Polanga). There are four species in the genus Daboia and in Sri Lanka we have the species Daboia Russelii. This Snake holds the number of second highest snake bites in Sri Lanka, highest number of fatalities and it's the 2nd most venomous viper in the island (Based on LD50 charts , saw scaled viper has more potent venom) as well as the title holder of the longest fangs of any Sri Lankan snake.

Russell's viper is an old world viper ,in other word, a true viper. True vipers doesn't have loreal pits between the eye and nostrils, which means they cannot see through heat vision. Many people might think the large opening in the snout are heat receptors but actually it's the nostril of the russell's viper. Still there is a mystery remains with it's nostril. Many herpertologists described a supernasal sac in this Daboia species, this sac has nerve endings which means it could act as some kind of a sensory organ. This nostril helps people to easily identified the snake as it's the only viper out there with such a big and kinda ugly nostril.

These snakes are widely distributed through out the island from plains to mid hill lands up to 1500m but a common snake in dry zone forests, glass lands and rice fields. Ruesselii can grow up to nearly 5 feet. their babies are around 20-25cm in birth.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sri Lankan Swallow / Martin : Babies

Swallows are common sight in a raining sky. Usually they fly up to very high altitudes with flocks and enjoy the rain. I'm lucky enough to have a swallow nest in my home which is located in Peradeniya ,Kandy. What i doubt is this particular species nested in our home is a House Martin or not. Martins and swallows both categorized under the Hirundinidae family. I searched all over the internet and couldn't find a bird that similar to the ones nested in my home. It's coloration is very similar to House Martin and Tree swallow but their belly feathers are black unlike the house martin.

These birds can fly very fast almost like a fighter jet they fly and take accurate curves. They like dark places to nest up, specially corners of the wall and roof sealing. Many swallows build their nests with mud sticked to the sealings and walls. They use their saliva as a component to make the mud and sticks, feathers to stick so strong to each other well. in our case ,they never used mud but leaf litter and all kinds of small sticks. it's quite hard and unbreakable for our natural force. That proofs how wonderful their saliva can work as a glue. Here are pictures of the nest in our home.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Micromax Canvas 4 : Re-Branding Can Be Endless

Micromax has finally announced their flagship device A 210 Canvas 4 which is expected to compete with some high end smartphones in the market. First of all ,i have to say i'm totally disappointed by what Micromax did even though i'm not a Micromax user. it's been few weeks they started to tease the device with two videos and it turned out to be a familiar looking device in that teaser. when my buddy Timix from India (owner of has find out that, it's quite similar to the BLU Life One smartphone , we came up with the doubt Micromax gonna re brand this particular handset and sell as Canvas 4. And our doubt came to reality today which is so sad.. Ggggggrrrr !

Seriously !!! this is not what people want. and i wonder why people pre order the device even without knowing the official specifications. nearly 4000 people has been pre orderd the canvas 4 within 7 hours. It's a flagship device so people expect something more than it's predecessor Canvas HD and today they got quite similar device with minor improvements and as a result people are cancelling their pre-booking. Check the comments in official Micromax page in Facebook if you think i'm a liar.