A newborn panther chameleon (Furcifer pardalis) has difficulty believing he has hatched from the egg.
But as Mother Nature Network explains, he is actually curled up like this as a result of a natural hatching mishap.
Generally, young chameleons of this species don’t need any help hatching so long as the first crack they make in the shell (known as the “pip”) is located at the end of the egg where their head is positioned. However, if they pip on the side of the egg (as the one in this photo did), then it can be a grave challenge for them to push out of the shell since their head isn’t near the cracked pipping hole.
Fortunately breeder Nick Henn of Canvas Chameleons was there as midwife.
“When his siblings were running around the container and he was still hanging out in the egg, I knew it was time to help,” Henn explains on his Facebook page.
“This isn’t to say that he wouldn’t have found a way out, but based off my past experiences with situations just like this, I felt it was necessary to play Mother Nature and give him a helping hand.”
The little guy maybe be brown now, but as an adult he will be as brightly coloured as his cousin pictured below.
Bill Condie is a science journalist based in Adelaide, Australia.
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