Scaly-Eyed Gecko

The country of Ecuador is the home to many exciting animals, even ones no one knew existed! Recent exploration by U.S. and Ecuadorian researchers have found more than 30 new species. Among the new species is the scaly-eyed gecko, which, even when full-grown is small enough to sit atop the eraser of a pencil. These geckos crawl along the forest floor, making them difficult to spot.

Researchers worry that deforestation and global warming could wipe out many of Ecuador’s unique creatures.

To read more, and to see a complete list of the newly found species (including a frog with see-through skin!), visit National Geographic.com.

Searching for Narwhals

narwhalThere is not a great deal known about the narwhal, a whale most familiar for its long spiraled horn. Researchers are trying to change that by attempting to net and tag a narwhal in Greenland.  Thousands of narwhals spend their summer in the cold waters off of Greenland’s shore.

Researcher Kristin Laidre has spent the last eight years attempting to tag a narwhal with a satellite transmitter which would send a variety of information. She is interested in knowing where narwhals travel and how deep they dive.

Laidre has managed to attach satellite transmitters to narwhals in other regions, but the Greenland population seems to be much more difficult to get close to.  Perhaps in another summer she’ll get lucky and finally attach a transmitter, but for her, this summer has ended the same way the last eight have.

For the full story and a podcast visit NPR.org.