Five new Frogs species found in Western Ghats.

4 March 2021.

Introduction:

Five new species of shrub frogs have been found by the research teams of US and India.. These species of the frog were discovered from the Western Ghats which is a globally recognised biodiversity hotspot.

Highlights of the research:

  • The findings of the research were published in the article called”An integrative approach to infer systematic relationships and define species groups in shrub frog, with description of five new species from the Western Ghats, India”.
  •  The research was carried under the leadership of Delhi University Professor Biju.
  • The five species of the frogs belong to Old World tree frog of family called Rhacophoridae.
  • These species were discovered by researchers from Kerala Forest Research Institute, University of Delhi and University of Minnesota.
  •  This discovery is part the long comprehensive study on Shrub frogs of genus Raorchestes in the Western Ghats.
  • The research was carried out for the period of 10 years.
  •  The new species were identified and were distinct on the basis of several criteria including the external morphology of frog, calling pattern, DNA, and behaviour.

About Shrub Frog

  • The new species called Raorchestes drutaahu of the Shrub Frog was discovered from Kadhalar in Idukki district and Siruvani in Palakkad district in the state of Kerala.
  •  While one other species called Raorchestes kakkayamensis or the Kakkayam Shrub Frog was discovered only around the Kakkayam dam.
  •  Third species called Raorchestes keirasabinae or Keira’s Shrub Frog was discovered in Agasthyamalai and Anamalai hills in western ghats.
  • The fourth species called Raorchestes sanjappai is a green shrub frog.
  • It was found in the Wayanad region of northern Kerala.
  •  It has been named after Dr M Sanjappa who is an Indian Botanist and former Director of Botanical Survey of India.
  • The last species which was discovered is Raorchestes vallikkannan or the Silver-eyed Shrub Frog.
  • It was found in Siruvani hills and areas surrounding Silent Valley National Park.

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