This species is endemic to the Western Ghats region of southern India, south of the Palghat Gap, in the States of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. It has been recorded from a wide elevational range from near sea level up to 1,200m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It is a subterranean species associated with soil in wet semi-evergreen tropical forest, also occurring agricultural areas and rubber plantations (Oommen et al., 2002). It is known to be oviparous with terrestrial eggs and aquatic larvae.
At places within its range it appears not to be uncommon.
It is an adaptable species that does not appear to be facing any significant threats.
It has been recorded in the following protected areas: Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary (Kerala); Idukki Wild Life Sanctuary (Kerala), Indira Gandhi National Park (Tamil Nadu).
Red List Status
Least Concern (LC)
Listed as Least Concern since, although its Extent of Occurrence is probably not much greater than 20,000 km2, it is common and adaptable with a presumed large population, and it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.
This is a poorly circumscribed species in need of taxonomic review, and it possibly comprises more than one species (M. Wilkinson pers. comm.).
Sushil Dutta, Gopalakrishna Bhatta, David Gower, Mark Wilkinson, Oommen V. Oommen 2004. Ichthyophis tricolor. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T59637A11974386. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T59637A11974386.en .Downloaded on 20 February 2019