A little chameleon species, named Brookesia nana may be the tiniest lizard in the world, but, according to a new study, it has something to be proud of - namely, a giant hemipenis that reaches over 10 percent of their body length. The study on the prickly subject, titled "Extreme miniaturisation of a new amniote vertebrate and insights into the evolution of genital size in chameleons" was published in the journal Scientific Reports.
The female lizards measured roughly 28.9 millimetres (1.13 inches long), while the smaller males were 21.6 millimetres (a little less than an inch long) - and yet, their genitals reached 2.5 millimetres (0.09 inches) when fully exposed.
Curious about how we study tiny #chameleons, why we look at their #genitals, and how minuscule #animals can change the way we understand the world?— Dr Mark D. Scherz (@MarkScherz) January 28, 2021
Here's a ✨T H R E A D✨🧵
"In these miniaturised species, the smaller males may simply need larger hemipenes to allow for a better mechanical fit that makes successful copulation with the much larger females possible", the paper states.