Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Short Lived little fella

A Chameleon With a Short Life
A little chameleon has a very short life:

...As researchers...reported in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the entire life span of the Furcifer labordi chameleon — from the moment of conception to development in the egg, hatching, maturation, breeding and right through to its last little lizardly thud to the ground — clocks in at barely a year...That hypercondensed biography, the scientists said, may well make the chameleon the shortest-lived tetrapod on Earth, a creature chronologically more like a butterfly or a sea squirt than like the other reptiles, frogs, birds and mammals...

Authors of the report also point out that the chameleon spends two thirds of it's brief existence inside the egg! Many invertebrates have short life spans, the vast majority being just one year. As pointed out in the study, this is certainly unusual for a vertebrate.

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