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Western Ghats

The Western Ghats form a mountain range on the western fringe of the Deccan Plateau[?] that forms peninsular India. The land falls abruptly towards the Arabian Sea and this is called a Ghat. This sudden cliff-like geographic entity captures a large amount of rainfall coming from the south-west monsoon, leading to some of the lushest forests in the world.

These forests are increasingly threatened, and are the home of some very interesting fauna and flora, many of them showing affinities to South-East Asia. Many of these faunal and floral elements are not found anywhere else in the Indian region except in parts of the North East of India.

The Western Ghats are also home to many endemic species and the endemism is very great in the amphibian and reptilian fauna. The snake family Uropeltidae[?] is almost entirely restricted to and diversified in this region of the world.

The area is hilly in certain parts with numerous streams, waterfalls and the forests help to nourish many perennial rivers in South India including the Kaveri River.

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