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Nguru pygmy chameleon

Rhampholeon acuminatus

Nguru spiny pygmy chameleon
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Reptiles
Order: Squamata
Family: Chamaeleonidae

This species has a very small range: forest floor litter in the Nguru Mountains of east Tanzania.

Little is known about the behaviour of this rare species, which only reaches around 5–6cm in length when fully grown.

Interesting facts!

  • This species has a small disc-like shape on the tip of their nose, and colouration can vary from shades of brown to vivid green.
  • These chameleons are sexually dimorphic. The males are more slender and longer and females and have a longer tail.
  • Females carry 3–4 eggs each and descend to the ground to lay them in leaf litter and soil.

Conservation

This minute and Critically Endangered chameleon is heavily impacted by the international pet trade, which has reduced its already small population. It is considered a global priority for conservation thanks to its evolutionary distinctness.

Paignton Zoo was one of the first zoos in the world to successfully breed this species in 2020 and our team are continuing to research the ideal breeding conditions to help further develop our knowledge of this species.