Cat Ba Leopard Gecko and Other New Species of the Mekong River Region

Photo: Thomas Ziegler / WWF

I, for one, welcome our new Cat Ba leopard gecko overlord. That fantastically sinister-looking leopard gecko (with the equally cool species name of Goniurosaurus catbaensis) is one of the 162 new species found in the Mekong River region of Southeast Asia:

Among the stars in the new list is a fanged frog in eastern Thailand. Given the scientific name Limnonectes megastomias, the frog lies in wait along streams for prey including birds and insects. Scientists believe it uses its fangs during combat with other males.

Another unusual discovery was the Cat Ba leopard gecko found on Cat Ba Island in northern Vietnam. Named Goniurosaurus catbaensis, it has large, orange-brown catlike eyes and leopard spots down the length of its yellowish brown body.

Lee Grismer, of La Sierra University in California, said he found a tiger-stripped [sic] pit viper in Vietnam described in the report while he was attempting to capture a second gecko species.

"We were engrossed in trying to catch a new species of gecko when my son pointed out that my hand was on a rock mere inches away from the head of a pit viper," Grismer said in a statement. "We caught the snake and the gecko and they both proved to be new species."

Whatever you do, don't look into the Cat Ba leopard gecko's eyes ... Link

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