Bengaluru researchers find its own species of frog

  • | Saturday | 28th November, 2020

Researchers from Mount Carmel College in Bengaluru, Zoological Survey of India, National Museum of Natural History in France, Indian Institute of Science, and Yuvaraaja’s College in Mysuru a new frog species and gave it the scientific name Sphaerotheca Bengaluru. Their findings have been published in the journal Zootaxa, and its suggested common name is “Bengaluru burrowing frog”.

Researchers from Mount Carmel College in Bengaluru, Zoological Survey of India, National Museum of Natural History in France, Indian Institute of Science, and Yuvaraaja’s College in Mysuru a new frog species and gave it the scientific name Sphaerotheca Bengaluru. Their findings have been published in the journal Zootaxa, and its suggested common name is “Bengaluru burrowing frog”.

The researchers discovered the frog during a survey around Rajankunte in North Bengaluru. “We sampled a set of frog specimens fitting the generic description of Sphaerotheca but not matching the descriptions of any of the extant species of the genus,” the study. They then carried out site-specific field searches in and around the degraded ecosystems of Bengaluru between September 2018 and October 2019 to collect burrowing frogs and document them.

Although these frogs belong to the burrowing frog species, there were differences in morphology, and gene sequence, said Deepak P, one of the researchers of the study and assistant professor of zoology at Mount Carmel College.“Frogs need water to complete their life cycle. Urban water bodies such as lakes are rapidly depleting in Bengaluru and this will pose a threat to them. We found the habitat of this species on the outskirts of the city, where there are agriculture and horticulture land, with temporary water sources dependent on rain,” Deepak said. 

In a statement, the researchers said that the new species has been named after Bengaluru to draw attention to the lacunae in the documentation of amphibians in non-forested areas and to restore freshwater bodies - which frogs inhabit - in Bengaluru. 



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