World’s smallest goanna lizard discovered in Australia
Saturday 18 November, 2017

World’s smallest goanna lizard discovered in Australia

Published On: Sat, Jan 3rd, 2015 | Health | By BioNews

The name of the new species is the ‘Dampier Peninsula Goanna’, so-called as this species is only known from the peninsula north of Broome and Derby, in the western Kimberley region of Western Australia. The scientific name is Varanus sparnus.

The discovery of this species is significant as it is the world’s smallest species of Varanus lizard (this single genus has 77 species, with the new species the 78th one). This group of charismatic lizards also contains large-bodied species such as the Australian desert-dwelling Perentie (Varanus giganteus) at over 2 metres long, and the famous Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis) from Indonesia at over 3 metres long and over 80 kg (the largest lizard in the world). In contrast, the new species has a maximum known size of only 23 cm and weighs just 16 grams.

The WA Museum is pleased to announce the discovery of a new species of goanna lizard from the Kimberley region. Image Credit: Western Australia Museum

The WA Museum is pleased to announce the discovery of a new species of goanna lizard from the Kimberley region.
Image Credit: Western Australia Museum

The species was discovered by consultants Roy Teale and Greg Harold from Biota Environmental Sciences while undertaking a survey in the region. It was classified by Dr Paul Doughty, Curator of Reptiles at the WA Museum.

The discovery of the new species highlights the high biodiversity values of the Kimberley region, and the possibility that more exciting finds await.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

More from Health
  • Depression in parents, grandparents bad for kids
  • India’s first ‘Harlequin Baby’ born in Nagpur
  • Diet deeply affects your sleep quality
  • Sleep-deprived brain can put you at risk
  • Workshop for kids undergoing cancer treatment