Researchers rediscover one of the world's most sought-after lost frogs

Jeremy Hance
mongabay.com
February 17, 2011



 The rediscovered Rio Pescado Stubfoot Toad (<i>Atelopus balios</i>) was number 6 in the 100 Lost Frogs. Photo: © Eduardo Toral-Contreras.
The rediscovered Rio Pescado Stubfoot Toad (Atelopus balios) was number 6 in the 100 Lost Frogs. Photo: © Eduardo Toral-Contreras.

The Search for Lost Frogs, a global expedition to uncover amphibian species not seen for decades, has uncovered one of the expedition's most sought-after species: the Pescado stubfoot toad (Atelopus balios). The discovery in Ecuador was one bright spot in a search that revealed more about the crisis and extinctions of frogs than it did about the hopefulness of finding cryptic communities. In total the expedition rediscovered 4 of its 100 targeted species.

The Pescado stubfoot toad was dubbed number 6 in the Search's Top Ten Amphibians, and was the only species in the Top Ten to be rediscovered.

Researchers had feared that this toad had succumbed to a fungal disease, chytridiomycosis like so many other amphibian species. However, researchers received a tip from a local community where the species, not seen since 1995, may still reside. A single adult toad was then found beside a river in a matrix of farmland and tropical rainforest.

While hopeful, the find does not guarantee the species' survival. Researchers believe this spot to be the last stand for the Critically Endangered Pescado stubfoot toad, and the area it was rediscovered is not under any form of protection.

The Search for Lost Frogs was an initiative undertaken by Conservation International (CI), the IUCN Amphibian Specialist Group (ASG), and Global Wildlife Conservation (GWC).



To read more about the Search's discoveries: Worldwide search for 'lost frogs' ends with 4% success, but some surprises.













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CITATION:
Jeremy Hance
mongabay.com (February 17, 2011).

Researchers rediscover one of the world's most sought-after lost frogs.

http://news.mongabay.com/2011/0216-hance_stubfoot.html