India’s newest frog evolved 60 million years ago
- It is just 2 cm long and sports pale blue spots and brilliant orange thighs. The discovery of the starry dwarf frog, a nocturnal amphibian that lives under leaf litter on a mountaintop in Kerala’s Wayanad, has been published on March 13 in PeerJ, an international multidisciplinary journal.
- The team named the new species the starry dwarf frog Astrobatrachus kurichiyana (genus Astrobatrachus after its starry spots and kurichiyana in honour of the Kurichiya tribal community who live in the area). It is not only a new species but different enough to be assigned to a new ‘subfamily’. Genetic analysis reveal that the species is at least 60 million years old.