If you blink, you might miss it. Pristimantis dorado, may not sound like a golden frog, but the brand new species has just been discovered on the outskirts of Bogotá, in Colombia. The whole nation is rich in frogs, especially this genus, with 205 of the tiny
clickers. The males call for the girls in the extremely diverse Andean cloud forests with unusual clicks. Then development proceeds directly, with no tadpole to worry about in the terrestrial habitat and therefore no water needed. At 2650 m (8700′) in the Cordillera Oriental, you are likely to find even more species, going by the current rate of discovery.
Mauricio Rivera-Correa, Faride Lamadrid-Feris and Andrew J. Crawford of the Universidad del Atlántico in Barranquilla (and US connections with the active Smithsonian Institute in the area) publish their paper in
Amphibia-Reptilia. There is a kind of competition between Colombia and Brazil in counting their species of Amphibia. At the moment the soccer equivalent would have a score of 5-4 to Brazil, and it isn’t half time yet!
5 years ago Ines Morales helped us to publicise the chytrid fungus disease that has made many species such as the Panamanian golden frog, Atelopus zeteki. She wrote about The fungus that killed frogs. We can only hope that lab. breeding of the Panamanian and many of these newly-discovered species will conserve some of the animals for the future, as habitat disappears as well as their wild conspecifics. If you blink, you will miss some of these newly discovered and wonderful animals!