London - A rare reptile has been banned from sale over fears that its dazzling appearance is fuelling the smuggling trade – because owners buy them to become popular on social media.
The Union Island gecko – prized for its jewel-like markings – is often seen on websites such as Instagram, where users post photographs for "likes".
But it can only be found on its namesake island in the Caribbean and it is thought there are just 9 960 left, as the illegal pet trade causes numbers to continue to decline.
World leaders have now voted for the species to be protected, so it cannot be commercially traded.
A fully grown Union Island gecko measures just over an inch long and weighs less than a pinch of salt.