The Pinocchio lizard — the anole with the extra-long proboscis — is not extinct after all. It has been rediscovered deep in the cloud forests of Ecuador. Researchers practically fell over it.
A release from Ecuador ecotourism operator Tropic quotes members of a team from Tropical Herping who had been searching for Pinocchio for three years. The Anolis proboscis, as it is properly known, is a “fantastic and mysterious creature,” said Alejandro Arteaga.
His team was searching at night, when the creature — camouflaged by day — can be more easily spotted. Walking along a stream in the Mindo cloud forest after midnight amid rain, tangled vegetation and the sound of croaking frogs, one team member saw the lizard on a branch, “just sleeping, covered in dew,” he said.