Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

World's smallest frogs discovered in New Guinea

Date:
December 13, 2011
Source:
Pensoft Publishers
Summary:
Field research has uncovered the world's smallest frogs in southeastern New Guinea. The discovery also makes them the world's smallest tetrapods (non-fish vertebrates). The frogs belong to the genus Paedophryne, all of whose species are extremely small, with adults of the two new species -- named Paedophryne dekot and Paedophryne verrucosa -- only 8 to 9 millimeters in length.

These are images of specimens of Paedophryne dekot (A) and (B), and P. verrucosa (C), and (D).
Credit: Photos by Fred Kraus

Field work by researcher Fred Kraus from Bishop Museum, Honolulu has found the world's smallest frogs in southeastern New Guinea. This also makes them the world's smallest tetrapods (non-fish vertebrates). The frogs belong to the genus Paedophryne, all of whose species are extremely small, with adults of the two new species -- named Paedophryne dekot and Paedophryne verrucosa -- only 8-9 mm in length.

Related Articles


The study was published in the open access journal ZooKeys.

Previous research had led to the discovery of Paedophryne by Kraus in 2002 from nearby areas in New Guinea, but the genus was not formally described until last year (Kraus 2010, also in Zookeys). The two species described earlier were larger, attaining sizes of 10-11 mm, but the genus still represents the most miniaturized group of tetrapods in the world.

"Miniaturization occurs in many frog genera around the world," said the author, "but New Guinea seems particularly well represented, with species in seven genera exhibiting the phenomenon. Although most frog genera have only a few diminutive representatives mixed among larger relatives, Paedophryne is unique in that all species are minute." The four known species all inhabit small ranges in the mountains of southeastern New Guinea or adjacent, offshore islands. Their closest relatives remain unclear.

The members of this genus have reduced digit sizes that would not allow them to climb well; all inhabit leaf litter, and their reduced digits may be a corollary of a reduced body size required for inhabiting leaf litter and moss. Habitation in leaf litter and moss is common in miniaturized frogs and may reflect their exploitation of novel food sources in that habitat. The frogs' small body sizes have also reduced the egg complements that females carry to only two, although it is not yet known whether both eggs are laid simultaneously or at staged intervals.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Fred Kraus. At the lower size limit for tetrapods, two new species of the miniaturized frog genus Paedophryne (Anura, Microhylidae). ZooKeys, 2011; 154 (0): 71 DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.154.1963

Cite This Page:

Pensoft Publishers. "World's smallest frogs discovered in New Guinea." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 December 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111212123943.htm>.
Pensoft Publishers. (2011, December 13). World's smallest frogs discovered in New Guinea. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111212123943.htm
Pensoft Publishers. "World's smallest frogs discovered in New Guinea." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111212123943.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) — In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) — Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) — The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Newsy (Dec. 19, 2014) — A new study suggests a certain type of bird was able to sense a tornado outbreak that moved through the U.S. a day before it hit. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins