Three pygmy chameleons, among Africa’s smallest reptiles, have hatched at Britain's Chester Zoo. The pencil tip-sized creatures are found only in Tanzania's coastal forests. They change color and produce a line down their side to blend with leaves in their surroundings.
Workers at the zoo studied hard to learn about the creatures in order to give them the best chance of surviving.
Ben Baker is a team manager of the reptiles department at the zoo. He said there was very little information about bearded pygmy chameleons. But one thing researchers do know is that pygmy chameleons are one of the most threatened reptiles in Africa.
"The new clutch will play a vital role in establishing a new breeding program," he said. "This will allow us to create a sustainable population and help gather new information about the species that has previously been unavailable to us, helping us play a key role in preventing the extinction of chameleons and other reptiles in the future."
The three bearded pygmy chameleons were born after being incubated (kept warm) for 70-days. They are safe and snug, and out of sight for now.
All things bright and beautiful,
all creatures great and small,
all things wise and wonderful:
the Lord God made them all.
— “All Things Bright and Beautiful,” 1848, Cecil Frances Alexander