Naked mole rat:
Credit: Justin Rosenberg, Connecticut CollegeThese salamanders are native only to two lakes in central Mexico. Because one of these lakes has been drained, and the other is polluted and diminished, axolotls are considered critically endangered in the wild. Because of their special ability to regenerate body parts, they are popular as research subjects in the lab. Here a green fluorescent protein lights up an axolotl under blue light.
Tube-nosed fruit bat:
Credit: © Piotr Naskrecki, Conservation InternationalWhile this guy's pretty cute, too, there's definitely a sinister aspect to its Yoda-like stare and horns. The bat species was discovered in Papua New Guinea, and is thought to play an important role in dispersing seeds in the forest.