Saturday, March 19, 2016

New Golden Frog Species Discovered

Pristimantis dorado. (Santiago Castroviejo-Fisher photo)

A new species of golden frog had been discovered at about 8,700 feet elevation near Chingaza National Park in Colombia.

The newly discovered frog is appropriately named " Prismantis Dorado " to memorialize the mythical tribal chief called El Dorado or the golden one. According to legend, El Dorado was a fabled tribal chief of Muisca, a native tribe of Colombia. He was said to cover himself with gold dust as an initiation rite.

'The Spaniards assumed Colombia’s wealth was its gold, but today we understand that the real riches of the country lie in its biodiversity,' said Andrew Crawford, a STRI research associate and faculty member at the Universidad de Los Andes.

Unlike any frogs, Prismantis Dorado does not have vocal sacs or vocal slits. The purpose of the vocal sac is to intensify their mating call. It is also one way of determining the sex of a frog in many species. Oddly enough, the male Prismantis Dorado, uses irregularly pulsed series of clicks.


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