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Noted Indian Herpetologist Bhupathy Subramaniam Dies During Expedition

Subramaniam was well known for his work on python ecology in India.

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Dr. Bhupathy Subramaniam, a well known Indian herpetologist widely praised for his detailed work on pythons and python ecology in India as well as Indian turtles and tortoises, died last week after falling during a herping expedition in India’s Agasthyamalai hills. He was 51.

Subramaniam was principal scientist at the Salim Ali Centre for Orinthology and Natural History (SACON) in India and was checking on the progress of a research project when he fell down a hill into a cluster of bamboo.


“It happened while we were coming down the peak by around 1.30 p.m. Though he had used the rope to go up the peak, he came down in a sliding position, his back facing the rock front,” V.J. Jins, a  junior research told Deccan Chronicle.

“Suddenly he lost control and started to fall down the rock face. He fell on a bamboo cluster and crashed face down on the ground. When we turned him around, we found a broken bamboo piece struck inside his left eye. But there was no bleeding. There was no head injury or other serious injuries,” Jins said.

A tribute to Subramaniam from noted scientists and herpetologists in India can be found on the Indiansnakes.org website.