That's not a head—that's a finger! A new nano-discovery has been made.
Scientists have recently discovered the world's smallest known reptile: the nano-chameleon, also known as Brookesia nana.
These little guys are only millimeters long, being able to sit on the tip of a finger!
Who wants one already?
The study on these creatures, performed by an international team, was published in Scientific Reports. The team was led by the Bavarian State Collection of Zoology. They discovered both a male and female nano-chameleon and compared analysis between the two. The Scientific Report's author, Frank Glaw, discussed the results.
"At a body length of just 13.5mm and a total length of just 22mm including the tail, the male Nano-Chameleon is the smallest known male of all higher vertebrates," he said in regards to length.
Overall, their size ranges from 19mm to 29mm, depending on their sex, with the males being smaller. They both had developed male and female reproductive organs, signifying they won't grow any larger, according to CT scans. The male's genitals actually comprised 20% of its body!
The study's co-author, Jörn Köhler, stated that these nan-chameleons' closest relatives lived in the same mountain area. Scientists are uncertain how these nano-chameleons came about to shrink to such a small size, based on their habitats. Their island habitat is unsafe at the moment due to deforestation going on, but thankfully it's been now assigned as a protected area.
Fanomezana Ratsoavina further commented on the nano-chameleon's habit affecting their size, saying, "The island effect that causes species on small islands to get smaller in body size, which has been invoked for other small chameleons, does not make sense in this case, because Brookesia nana lives in the mountains on mainland Madagascar."
It sounds like more research is definitely needed to distinguish the two species. Study author Andolalao Rakotoarison has said, "There are numerous extremely miniaturized vertebrates in Madagascar, including the smallest primates and some of the smallest frogs in the world, which have evolved independently."
So far, their study sounds amazing and will hopefully lead to more discoveries.
What do you think of this discovery? Let us know in the comments.