SPECIES: Varanus mitchelli — Mitchell's Water Monitor

CLASSIFICATION: Critically endangered

Mitchell's Water Monitor is a semi aquatic species native to the northern regions of Australia. It has recently been classified both nationally on the EPBC and internationally on the IUCN as critically endangered. Described as having a rather nervous, shy demeanour, Mitchell's Water Monitor can be distinguished by the orange or yellow stripes along its neck and the dark spots that occur on its back. With rough and wrinkly skin, their habitat is swamps, lagoons and inland rivers - usually found in trees (for shelter) near a body of water. Also partial to a bit of rock-bathing, basking in the sunshine.

The species has suffered immensley from the Cane Toad invasion, reported to have experienced a 97% decrease in population in just 3 years.

Photo: Graham Winterflood

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