Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genes and calls reveal five-fold greater diversity of Amazon frog species

Date:
January 15, 2014
Source:
Pensoft Publishers
Summary:
DNA is opening a new age of discovery of Amazonian frog species. A detailed genetic survey of populations of two species of Amazonian frogs made by Ecuadorian biologists has documented the existence of up to nine hidden new species.

This new species, Almendariz's treefrog, inhabits cloud forests in the Amazon basin. Its habitat is threatened by deforestation and agriculture.
Credit: Dr Santiago Ron; CC-BY 4.0

Amazonian biodiversity has been studied for hundreds of years. Early explorers of Amazonian plants and animals included renowned naturalists of the stature of Alexander von Humboldt and A. R. Wallace. Despite this long history of exploration, new studies are resulting in the discovery of a large number of new species. The key of these discoveries lies in the use of advanced new tools for species detection.

Related Articles


The study, published in the open access journal ZooKeys, found up to 11 species among populations of what were previously considered two widespread treefrog species. Based on analyses of the genetic variation of dozens of Amazonian populations across six countries, the team lead by Marcel Caminer from the Museum of Zoology at Catholic University of Ecuador, found unequivocal evidence of the existence of a large amount of the so called "cryptic diversity." The genetic results were corroborated with detailed analyses of male calls and body shape and color. The study formally describes four of the new species identified.

'These findings could not be possible without large-scale genetic sampling' said Dr Santiago Ron, one of the authors of the study. 'The genetic data allows the discovery of species that have been hidden in museum shelves for decades. Genetic screening is opening a new age of scientific discovery in biodiversity studies in the Amazon region'

"Cryptic species" are two or more species mistakenly classified as a single one. Traditionally, taxonomists recognized species purely on morphological grounds and therefore failed to discriminate between species with similar appearance. The increasing use of DNA sequences for species recognition is demonstrating that current estimates vastly underestimate the true Amazonian species richness.

The discovery of cryptic diversity also has important implications for the conservation prospects of the species. 'What were considered two species with wide geographic distribution turned out to be eleven species with much smaller geographic ranges. This change implies that each species has a higher extinction probability' said Dr. Ron. 'If our results are typical of Amazonian amphibians, a large scale reassessment of their conservation status and geographic distribution will be required'.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Pensoft Publishers. The original story is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Marcel Caminer, Santiago Ron. Systematics of treefrogs of the Hypsiboas calcaratus and Hypsiboas fasciatus species complex (Anura, Hylidae) with the description of four new species. ZooKeys, 2014; 370: 1 DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.370.6291

Cite This Page:

Pensoft Publishers. "Genes and calls reveal five-fold greater diversity of Amazon frog species." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115100130.htm>.
Pensoft Publishers. (2014, January 15). Genes and calls reveal five-fold greater diversity of Amazon frog species. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115100130.htm
Pensoft Publishers. "Genes and calls reveal five-fold greater diversity of Amazon frog species." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115100130.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, December 20, 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
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
Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
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