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The earless grassland dragon had not been spotted in wild Australian grasses since the time of man’s first moon landing.
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It is the result of many years of research. A small lizard threatened with extinction has been observed for the first time since 1969 in Australia, local authorities announced on Sunday June 25, quoted by The Guardian et The Age. The Earless Grassland Dragon (Tympanocryptis pinguicolla) was rediscovered in February west of Melbourne (State of Victoria), when experts feared its disappearance in the wild. « It is probably the most endangered reptile in the world », said Zoos Victoria director Jenny Gray.
“We have people who have spent 30 years looking for this species and I believe this is the pinnacle of our (species) conservation careers”, reacted the head of endangered species at Zoos Victoria, Garry Peterson. For four months, scientists have scoured the site of this discovery, from where they have extracted 16 specimens of this species in the hope of promoting their reproduction in a zoo, with a view to a greater reintroduction into their natural habitat.
According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Australian reptiles are increasingly threatened by invasive species and global warming. Invasive stray cats kill hundreds of millions every year. The increasing intensity and frequency of wildfires in Australia poses an additional threat.