Scientists find Madagascar chameleon last seen 100 years ago

AP – Talk about good camouflage!

Scientists said they have found an elusive chameleon species that was last spotted in Madagascar 100 years ago.

Researchers from Madagascar and Germany said on Friday that they discovered several living specimens of Voeltzkow’s chameleon during an expedition Zto the northwest of the African island nation.

In a report published in the journal Salamandra, the team led by scientists from the Bavarian Natural History Collections ZSM said genetic analysis determined that the species is closely related to Labord’s chameleon.

Researchers believe that both reptiles only live during the rainy season — hatching from eggs, growing rapidly, sparring with rivals, mating and then dying during a few short months.

“These animals are basically the mayflies among vertebrates,” said curator for reptiles and amphibians at the ZSM Frank Glaw.

Photo from Staatliche Naturwissenschftliche Sammlung Bayerns (SNSB) shows a Voeltzkow-Chameleon in Madagascar. PHOTO: AP