Friday, 25 March 2016

chicken of the sea

There is a species of gecko (Uroplatus phantasticus) native to Madagascar that has the common name of the “Baweng satanic leaf gecko.” Not only does its tail bear an uncanny resemblance to dropped foliage, so too does its whole body when not in motion.
The trade name was given to the lizard by enterprises that imported these unusual specimens from the island off the the south-eastern African coast to make them sound even more exotic as pets. Aside from sea-monkeys, I can’t think of an another incident where animals were reflagged by the pet-market, though I can come up with several times that animals destined for consumption were given fancier culinary brand-names. Not to fault responsible human caretakers whom did not create such a market to begin with, our duty to conserve natural habitats is all the more urgent so such fantastical creatures can thrive in the wild as well, and the ones who look like cigarette butts or fast-food wrappers don’t gain the advantage.