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New iguana species found in China
Scientists were researching the Calotes versicolor (above) when they discovered the new species.
Wang’s garden lizard has a distinctive orange tongue.

A new iguana species has been discovered in China, by a research team investigating a different species.

The iguana, now known as Wang’s garden lizard (Calotes wangi), is less than 9cm long and has a distinctive orange tongue.

The research team, from Guangxi University of Chinese Medicine, had been conducting field surveys in South China when they found the new iguana. However, samples they had been collecting of the oriental garden lizard (Calotes versicolor) were later discovered to be part of a new, undescribed species and two subspecies.

Analysis revealed the species was formed as a monophyletic group, and displayed considerable genetic divergence between organisms of the same genus.

Calotes wangi
can be found in the subtropical, broad-leaved forests and the tropical monsoon forests of southern China and northern Vietnam. They were mostly in mountainous areas, hills and plains on forest edges, shrub lands, arable lands and urban green belts.

The species is active from April to October each year, but can remain active from March to November, or longer, in tropical regions. It eats a variety of insects, spiders and other arthropods.

While the new species is not considered to be threatened, there were some areas of its habitat which were fragmented and their bodies are used medicinally.

The researchers have suggested that local governments work to strengthen protection of the iguana’s ecological environment, and pay closer attention to its population dynamics.

Yong Huang, whose team described the species, said: “It is active at the edge of the forest, and when it is in danger, it rushes into bushes or climbs tree trunks to hide.

“Investigations found that the lizards lie on sloping shrub branches at night, sleeping close to the branches.”

The full study can be found in the journal ZooKeys.

Image © Shutterstock

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Rabbit Awareness Week set to return this summer

News Story 1
 Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW) is returning this summer, running from 24-28 June 2024. The theme for this year will be 'Healthy Diet, Happy Bunnies'.

The focus on rabbits' diet comes after the most recent PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report report revealed that 42 per cent of veterinary professionals identified inappropriate diet as one of the five most important rabbit welfare issues that need to be address.

The campaign will include veterinary blogs, videos, and digital waiting room resources. Practices can sign up to receive updates about RAW. 

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CVS Group hit by cyber attack

CVS Group, which owns more than 450 veterinary practices in the UK, has been hit by a cyber attack.

In a statement, the group said the incident involved unauthorised external access to a limited number of its IT systems. As soon as the attack was discovered, the group took its IT systems temporarily offline, causing 'considerable operational disruption'.

It has warned that the security steps taken and ongoing plans to move its operational systems and IT infrastructure to the Cloud are likely to have an ongoing impact over a number of weeks.

Due to the risk that personal information was accessed, CVS has informed the Information Commissioner's Office. The company is working with third party consultants to investigate the incident.