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New Species Of Frog Discovered: Smallest Indian Land Vertebrate

Date:
October 3, 2007
Source:
University of Delhi
Summary:
The India's smallest land vertebrate, a 10-millimeter frog, has been discovered in a mountain range in Western India. Indian land vertebrates (all animals with backbone except fishes), comprises of 2,400 species including 218 frog species.

This tiny Indian frog sitting on an Indian 5 rupee coin is the smallest India frog.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Delhi

The India’s smallest land vertebrate, a 10-millimeter frog, has been discovered from the Western Ghats of Kerala by Delhi University Systematics Biologist, S D Biju and his colleagues.

Indian land vertebrates (all animals with backbone except fishes), comprises of 2,400 species including 218 frog species.

S D Biju and his colleagues discovered the tiny night frog living under leaf litter and among the roots of ferns in the humid rainforest of the Western Ghats of Kerala, a mountainous region in the western portion of India. Biju gave a new name for the frog, Nyctibatrachus minimus.

With adult males of barely 10 mm in length, Nyctibatrachus minimus is the smallest of all known Indian land vertebrates and compete with miniature frogs in other parts of the world, including Cuba, the Amazon and Borneo.

This frog can be found during nighttime (hence the common name of the genus- Nightfrog) and also can be heard (mating calls) from under the leaf litter during monsoon months, the ideal time for reproduction.

Biju has been working in the Western Ghats to find new species of frogs over the past several years, and his findings include the purple frog (Nasikabatrachus) and the first canopy frog (Philautus nerostagona) from India.

The discovery was published recently in the Journal Current Science.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Delhi. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Delhi. "New Species Of Frog Discovered: Smallest Indian Land Vertebrate." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071003084524.htm>.
University of Delhi. (2007, October 3). New Species Of Frog Discovered: Smallest Indian Land Vertebrate. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071003084524.htm
University of Delhi. "New Species Of Frog Discovered: Smallest Indian Land Vertebrate." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071003084524.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

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