Species: Dwarf chameleon (Brookesia exarmata)
Status: Endangered (EN)
Interesting Fact: At just 45mm long, the dwarf chameleon is one of the smallest reptiles in the world.
The dwarf chameleon can only be found on a high plateau in western central Madagascar. It is believed to forage in the leaf litter during the day, and roost above ground on stems or leaves at night. This tiny brown and beige chameleon easily blends into the leaf litter, perhaps explaining why it was only described to science in 1996 and relatively little is known about its biology.
The dwarf chameleon is considered Endangered by the IUCN because it has a severely fragmented population over a small range. Despite occurring in protected areas, its habitat is at risk of degradation caused by fire, overgrazing, agriculture and selective logging. The dwarf chameleon is also listed on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), meaning that trade in this species is carefully controlled.
Find out more about chameleons on the BBC Nature website.
See images and find out more about the dwarf chameleon on ARKive.
Lauren Pascoe, ARKive Researcher