Nitya Mohanty

Current research

This post-doctoral project is a continuation of my PhD study on the invasive Indian bullfrog Hoplobatrachus tigerinus on the Andaman Islands. The Indian bullfrog Hoplobatrachus tigerinus, a large dicroglossid frog (snout to vent length: up to 160 mm), is native to the Indian sub-continent. Despite the high likelihood of invasion success for the bullfrog, based on species-traits and human-interaction, its invasion process had not been assessed. This study aimed to understand four major aspects of the Indian bullfrog’s invasion on the Andaman Islands, where it has recently been introduced: i) distribution and dispersal, ii) impact of adults iii) impact of carnivorous tadpoles, and iv) invasion dynamics and efficacy of potential management strategies. Finally, the thesis aimed to assess v) the bullfrog’s global invasion potential and status of all extra-limital populations. Apart from completing pending manuscripts from my doctoral research, the current project envisages two additional studies on global patterns in amphibian invasions.

Biography

Biological invasions have been the major focus of my research, primarily based out of the Andaman archipelago in Bay of Bengal. My MSc and PhD work focussed on faunal invasions on the archipelago (the Spotted deer Axis axis and the Indian bullfrog Hoplobatrachus tigerinus), evaluating their invasion dynamics and impacts. Apart from species-specific research, I have contributed to studies on the amphibian pet trade and reviews on biological invasions. As my research is based out of a global biodiversity hotspot, I have keen interest in the natural history and behavioural ecology of several endemic species. I am involved in ongoing studies on sleep ecology of lizards in particular. Academic publications aside, I regularly write articles in public forums to provide behind-the-scene peeks into the glamourized world of wildlife science.