Researchers Discover 163 New Species in Southeast Asia’s Mekong Region

January 3, 2017 5:00 am
Mekong River as it winds through Thailand (Getty Images)
Mekong River as it winds through Thailand (Getty Images)


As much as we know about our planet, there is always more to learn. Each year, the World Wildlife Fund tallies new species discovered all over the world—and in a recent case, one region came up with an extremely high number.

In a new study, the WFF says there were 163 new animals found in the Greater Mekong Region. A newt that resembles the Klingons from Star Trek, a rainbow-headed snake, and a lizard that looks remarkably like a dragon were among the findings. In total, 126 plants, 14 reptiles, 11 fish, 9 amphibians, and 3 mammals were discovered.

The Mekong River snakes through Southeast Asia, carving up some of the world’s most biodiverse lands. It stretches from the Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau in China to Southern Vietnam, traveling through six countries, including Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia. From 1997 to 2017, over 2,400 new species have been recorded there.

See the newly documented species in the video below.


Read the full report here.

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