The psychedelic Vietnam gecko (Photo:

Ca Mau (VNA) – Scientists from the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology have discovered 700 psychedelic rock geckos (Cnemaspis psychedelica) on Hon Khoai island, Ngoc Hien district in the southernmost province of Ca Mau.

The diurnal species, informally called yellow-tailed gecko in Vietnam, is currently known only from the island. It lives on large granite boulders in the shade of the forest canopy.

It is threatened by extinction due to poaching and illegal trade.

Local scientists have made submission for the lizard to be listed among the endangered species in the Vietnam Red Data Book.

They are also completing documents to make the gecko a subject of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Experts from the Wildlife At Risk Vietnam have proposed Ca Mau authorities set up a Cnemaspis psychedelica conservation centre on Hon Khoai island.-VNA