A bird-eating, fanged frog, a leopard patterned gecko and a bird that would rather walk than fly are among the 163 new species discovered in the Greater Mekong region last year, which now could face extinction due to climate change, according to a new report launched by WWF. In the last year, scientists have identified rare and unique species within the jungles and rivers of the Greater Mekong. They include a bird-eating fanged frog that lies in streams waiting for prey, a bird called the Nonggang babbler, which walks longer distances than it flies, only taking flight when frightened, and the leopard gecko, a reptile with orange eyes, spindly limbs and technicolour skin. The report, entitled Close Encounters, spotlights species newly identified by science, including 100 plants, 28 fish, 18 reptiles, 14 amphibians, two mammals and a bird. These were all discovered in 2008 within the Greater Mekong region of Southeast Asia, which spans Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the south-western Chinese province of Yunnan. WWF is warning that these newly discovered species are already threatened by the devastating impacts of climate change. Recent studies show the climate of the Greater Mekong region is changing, and models suggest continued warming, increased variability and more frequent and damaging extreme climate events. Rising seas and saltwater intrusion will cause major coastal impacts especially in the Mekong River delta, which is one of the three most vulnerable deltas on Earth, according to the most recent International Panel on Climate Change report. "It is great news that science is uncovering exciting and unusual new species like the fanged frog and the leopard gecko, but it is very worrying that no sooner do we find a new species, than we have to sound an alarm over their prospects for survival," said Heather Sohl from WWF-UK. "Rare, endangered and endemic species like these will be especially vulnerable to climate change, which has the potential to reduce their already restricted habitats."