Cambodia’s newest species discovery: a stumpy-legged rainbow lizard


Meet the Lygosoma veunsaiensis: a newly discovered lizard that dwells underground in the Cambodian jungles.

The slender skink is quite striking: its skin evokes the rainbow reflection you see when light strikes an oil slick. It was discovered by a joint team — Conservation International/Flora and Fauna International — the plies the jungles seeking new species.

The team called the lizard a "very lucky find, as this type of lizard typically spends much of its time underground."

Will wildlife researchers encounter more lucky finds in Cambodia's little-explored hinterlands?

That may depend on how many jungles are lost to illicit logging, a lucrative industry watchdog group Global Witness connects to key government figures.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Sign up for The Top of the World, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning.