New Frog species found in Bhutan

The presence of a new frog species named the Leptobrachium bampu was sighted in Pakhola under Jigmecholing gewog under Sarpang dzongkhag by a team of researchers from College of Natural Resources during the Himalayan Bull frog survey towards the end of 2015.

According to the research team member from CNR, Jigme Tenzin, the frog was sighted near the Pakhola stream under a rock fissure and the footage of the frog was taken for identification to a few well-known Herpetologists.

The frog was found at an altitude of 161 meters above sea level when the team first sighted it but the confirmation could not be made due to its poor image resolution. However, now the frog was confirmed as being new in Bhutan.

In Bhutan alone there are seven species of Leptobrachium bampu who belong to an Anura group under Megophrydae family.

These species are identified by an entirely greyish-blue eye colour and roundish body. Also its head is wider and lacks spines on upper lip in adult males that are often present in Leptobrachium subgenus Vibrissaphora.

Meanwhile its back and head is grayish-brown getting lighter on the flanks. The sides of head and body have a brownish shine.

This species is found in Bompu in the Eagle Nest Wildlife Sanctuary, West Kameng district in Arunachal Pradesh, India, at an altitude of 2000 m. These type of specimens are found near a slow-flowing stream during heavy rain and the frog survives under forest cover, transitioning between East Himalayan subtropical wet hill forest at lower altitudes and East Himalayan wet temperate forest at higher altitudes.

Leptobrachium bompu is named after the camp site near where it was first discovered in Bompu, in order to increase awareness in the community about conserving the forests.

The record of the new frog, Bhutan would now mean Bhutan has a total of 36 species of amphibians from a record of 35 amphibians species recorded by the World Wildlife Fund Bhutan (WWF) last year.

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One comment

  1. There must be double the number of anurans in Bhutan as of counted recently in Bompu. Cheers for collective research.

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