Scientists announced Monday the discovery of 10 amphibian species in
Colombia potentially new to science, including an orange-legged rain
frog, three poison frogs and three transparent “glass” frogs.
During a three-week expedition in Colombia’s northwestern Tacarcuna
hills in the Darien Gap bordering Panama, scientists identified about
60 species of amphibians, 20 reptiles and almost 120 species of birds,
many of them apparently unique to the area.
“Without a doubt this
region is a true Noah’s Ark,” said Jose Vicente Rodriguez-Mahecha,
Conservation International’s scientific director in Colombia.
high number of new amphibian species found is a sign of hope, even with
the serious threat of extinction that this animal group faces in many
other regions of the country and the world.”
The expedition, led
by CI herpetologists and ornithologists from Colombia’s Ecotropico
Foundation, yielded potentially new species of amphibians, including
three glass frogs, whose transparent skin can reveal internal organs, a
harlequin frog, two rain frogs and one salamander.
The group said Colombia has one of the most diverse amphibian communities in the world, with 754 species currently recorded.
consider amphibians important indicators of ecosystem health,” the
group said in a statement. Many species are impacted by climate change.
porous, absorbent skin, they often provide early warnings of
environmental degradation caused by acid rain, or contamination from
heavy metals and pesticides that can also harm people.”
scientists found large mammals, such as the endangered Baird’s tapir,
white-lipped peccary and four species of monkeys — Geoffroy’s spider
monkey, Geoffroy’s tamarin, the white-throated capuchin and the mantled
Other findings included Central American species
never before recorded in northern South America, including a
salamander, a rain frog, a small lizard and a snake.
we confirm we are leaders in natural diversity and not only in our
region but in the world. Without a doubt this discovery represents a
great milestone for science and human health,” Colombian Environment
Minister Juan Lozano said in a statement. (AFP)