• The discovery of the non-venomous crying keelback, whose zoological name is Hebius lacrima, has been published in Zootaxa, the New Zealand-based scientific mega-journal for animal taxonomy.
  • The name for this keelback was suggested because of a dark spot under its eyes looking like a black tear that interrupts a white stripe running along the upper jaw to the back of its head and beyond.
  • ‘Lacrima’ means tear in Latin.
  • The crying keelback had to be compared with 44 species of snakes worldwide under the genus Hebius.
  • The snake, preferring to live near streams along paddy fields, was found to feed on small fish, tadpole, frogs and geckos.
  • Globally snakes are represented by 3,709 species. The northeast is home to some 110 species, with Arunachal Pradesh accounting for 55.
  • Several animals, birds, amphibians and insects have been discovered in Arunachal Pradesh in a little more than two decades.
  • Assam-based Anwaraddin Choudhury discovered the Arunachal macaque (Macaca munzala) in 1997 but it was recognised as a new primate species in 2004.
  • Another primate species called the white-cheeked macaque (Macaca leucogenys) was discovered by a four-member team in 2015.
  • Another major discovery was that of the Himalayan forest thrush in 2016.
  • It was given the scientific name Zoothera salimalii after legendary ornithologist Salim Ali.