Brookesia – Leaf chameleons

Endemic to Madagascar, they are small and light as a leaf

Off the coast of Africa, in large portions of the island of Madagascar, these tiny critters mind their business in the leaf litter of rainforests and dry deciduous woods. Their distinctive activity is how they got their moniker. When startled, these chameleons pretend to be dead to seem like a leaf.

The two prominent horns that emerge from the Brown leaf chameleon’s skull give it an intimidating appearance despite its diminutive stature. Due to habitat degradation, this small chameleon population is probably on the decline. Both its population and its woodland environment are believed to be significantly fragmented.