Zoogeography-Oriental and Australasian Regions, Biology tutorial

Fauna of Oriental Region:

Oriental Region comprises Indian sub-continent, Philippines, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Myanmar (Burma), Taiwan (Formosa) and China. Like te other regions, oriental region is separated in 4 sub- regions. These are:

i) Indian Sub-Region: this area comprises North and Central India. It begins from root of Himalayas and expands to Malabar Coast, distinguished by plains and deserts with temperate and tropical conditions. Its vertebrate fauna comprise peacock, antelopes, black elephant, Indian Bison, and snakes.

ii) Ceylonian Sub-Region: It comprises Sri Lanka, Small Indian Peninsula. It contains rat, lions, elephants, horses, bandicoots and snakes,

iii) Indo-China Sub-Region: This area comprises China south of Palaearctic region. Vertebrate fauna comprises lemurs, gibbons, salamanders, rhinoceros, and disc tongued frogs.

iv) Indo-Malayan Sub-Region: It comprises Malayan peninsula and surrounding islands. Its fauna comprises rhinoceroses, gibbons, badgers and broad bills (birds). Fauna population of Oriental region resembles that of Afrotropical region. Animals found comprise:

Fishes: Fish fauna here is dominated by carps and catfishes.

Amphibians: Several species of frogs and toads but tailed amphibians are unusual and signified by only one genus, Tylptotriton.

Reptiles: There are several reptiles in the region dominated by lizards (chameleon, flying lizard, and monitor lizard), snakes (python, cobra etc.), turtles and crocodiles.

Birds: Birds here comprise wood pecker, horn bill, honey guides, and peacock etc.

Mammals: Members of mammalian fauna comprise rabbits, shrews, cats, dogs, hyenas, rhinoceroses, great apes, pigs, gorillas, Himalayan panders, chimpanzees, camels etc.

Fauna of Australasian Region:

This region has New Zealand, Australia, New Guinea and close by islands in Pacific Ocean. Region is separated in four sub-regions that are:

i) Australian Sub-region: comprises Australia and Tasmania. It is situated in Southwest of Pacific Ocean and illustrates very strange fauna. It contains both tropical and temperate climatic conditions. This is Home of Marsupials' as there are 34 genera of marsupials in said region.

ii) Austromalayan Sub-region: This region comprises Papua New Guinea, Malayan Archepelago islands, Solomon Islands etc. Crowned pigeons, turtles and marsupials found here.

iii) Polynesian Sub-region: Comprises Polynesian Islands. Fauna here is poor. Pigeons are though common.

iv) New Zealand Sub-region: Covers New Zealand and is recognized for kiwis. Kiwi is national symbol of New Zealand. There are also bats and rats; snakes are absent.

Fauna of whole Australasian Region: This is symbolized by:

Fishes: Most significant fish is lung fish (Neoceratodus). There are several other freshwater and marine fishes like mackerel, Cynoglosus, Anabas, carps (Catla catla), sharks (Scoliodon), etc.

Reptiles: In New Zealand snakes are absent. Lizard-like reptile, tuatara (Sphenodon) is found only in this region. Other reptiles comprise monitor lizard (Varanus), tortoise (Testudo elegans), turtle (Trionyx, Caretta caretta), chamaeleon etc.

Amphibians: Tailed amphibians, frogs (comprising flying species) and toads are common.

Birds: In this region flightless birds like kiwi (Apteryx - present only in New Zealand), Emu (Dromaeus - in New Guinea) and Cassowary - present in Australia) are common. Other flight found in this region comprises pigeon (Columba livia), crane, crow, duck, sparrow (Passer domesticus).

Mammals: These comprise kangaroo (Macropus), duck-billed platypus (Ornithorhynchus), tiger cat (Dasous), marsupial bandicoot (Paramoles), flying fox (Pteropus), spiny ant eater, (Echidna ), horse (Equs equs), rat (Ratus ratus), donkey (Equsacinus) and pig (Sus).

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