Flying Dragon Lizard

Draco volans (English translation Flying Dragon) is a small lizard found in Southeast Asia and the Philippine Islands. It grows to a length of approximately 8cm, and it flies, or at least soars. Similar to the flying squirrel, it has a membrane that stretches between it’s fore and hind limbs. What makes D. volans, unique, is that the membrane contains the animal’s ribs.

Draco volans Skeleton Diagram.

Flying Dragons (Draco) of the East Indies and Indian Archipelago. In these singular little Lizards there is a broad membranous expansion on each side, formed by a fold of the integument, supported upon the five or six posterior or false ribs, which run straight out from the spinal column. By means of these lateral expansions of the skin, the Draco can take long flying leaps from tree to tree, and can pursue the insects on which it feeds ; but the lateral membranes simply act as parachutes, and there is no power of true flight, properly so called.

image credit: Reddit user Biophilia_curiosus

D volans in flight

Taxonomy

 

At that size and breathing fire, they would make terrific cigar lighters.

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