New frog species discovered
Posted by Miqe on March 14, 2007
A NEW species of frog has been discovered in Western Australia.
The chattering rock frog was found in the Kimberley region by scientists documenting biodiversity ahead of the arrival of the cane toad.
WA Museum herpetologist Paul Doughty and Sydney based tadpole expert Marian Anstis discovered the frog near the Grotto, a waterhole near the East Kimberley town of Wyndham.
Dr Doughty said today the frog was the first new species from the region to be described in 20 years.
“We found it initially because of its unusual Morse code-like call which is reflected in its scientific name, Litoria staccato,” Dr Doughty said.
The chattering rock frog was endemic to the Kimberley region and unlikely to be affected by the imminent invasion of the cane toads, he said.
“Although cane toads will be in the territory in two to three years, it is unlikely to impact on this frog species as the habitat is completely different – grasslands versus rocks,” he said.
The frog is the first of what researchers hope will be several new species discovered over the duration of the Alcoa Australia-backed project.
Cane toads are making across the Northern Territory towards the northern WA boarder as toad busting groups are working to prevent the pests crossing into the state.
Found on Herald Sun