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  Dijo Thomas Declares a New Species in Neelagiri Kaduva Family named Neelagiri Cheruvan!  

Sep 2019

Neelagiri Cheruvan is the second Species to be discovered in Neelagiri Kaduva Family

Neelagiri Cheruvan is much smaller than Neelagiri Kaduva, which is as Big as Tiger.

Neelagiri Cheruvan has a face similar to that of Neelagiri Kaduva or a Dog.

Neelagiri Cheruvan is only little more Bigger than a Dog.

Neelagiri Cheruvan’s main prey is Dog.

Where?: Wayanad, Ootty, Munnar, Bangalore.

I have come across evidences of Neelagiri Cheruvan in Kodaikanal. There a lot of dogs are being hunted, which the wildlife people thought to be the act of Leopards. But my investigation revealed that it is Neelagiri Cheruvan. [But I am yet to see any eyewitness of Neelagiri Cheruvan in Kodaikanal.

Color: Reddish brown. Pepper Grey etc. It therefore, according to some, look like “Black & White”.

But some could be pale yellow or brown also.

Date of First hearing : 2015

Discovery & Confirmation date : 2017

Discovery in Ooty: 2018

Colloquial Names:

Wayanad: Patti Puli [Dog Leopard]

Ootty: Naai Siruthai [Dog Leopard]

Munnar: Pohayan

Bangalore : Madka [for both Neelagiri Kaduva & Neelagiri Cheruvan ] – Seer naai

The largest population of Neelagiri Cheruvan occurs in Ooty & Nilgiris , which I estimate to be about 10 – 15. Here Neelagiri Kaduva does not exist.

Only in Wayanad & Bangalore does both Neelagiri Kaduva & Neelagiri Cheruvan exists in a single locality.


Astonishing Tactics of Neelagiri Cheruvan to catch a Dog !

As Neelagiri Cheruvan is not much Bigger than a Dog, it is difficult for it to hunt a dog down. Therefore it uses a special tactics to catch a Dog.
Neelagiri Cheruvan will bark like a dog. Hearing it the dog will rush to intercept the new “dog” that have invaded its territory.

When the dog gets near Neelagiri Cheruvan will attack and catch the dog.

Dijo Thomas solves the Mystery of Pohayan in Munnar !!

Is Pohayan in Munnar Neelagiri Kaduva? Many had asked me. But I had replied in the negative. Pohayan is known only to be a little bigger than a dog.

In 2014, during my first discovery of Neelagiri Kaduva, when Sri Joseph IFS, then Director of Thiruvananthapuram Museum saw Cub of Neelagiri Kaduva [which was attacked by the mob & killed (] he told me & Dr. Jacob Alexander that it could be Pohayan. But I told him that it was not Pohayan but Patti Kaduva (Colloquial Name of Neelagiri Kaduva ).

Neelagiri Cheruvan is the Pohayan in Munnar!

It could have got the name Pohayan [Smoke], because of its grey color.

Dijo Thomas


Neelagiri Cheruvan – Dina Thanthi – 21Sep19















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