Mangaluru, Oct 10, 2015: A few years back a team of researchers from St. Aloysius College and Japan found a new species of frog on the outskirts of the city. Now the habitat of the frog at Adyar is under threat due to intensive land filling activities, says one of the researchers.
The frog Euphlyctes aloysii , was named after St. Aloysius College, by the researchers Hareesh Joshy, the then head of the Department of Zoology of the college and Mitusuru Kuramoto, Emeritus Professor, Fukuoka University, Japan. Researcher Joshy, who has now retired from the college, said that the frog was found in paddy fields and marshy land in Adyar and Bajpe.
Now land filling along the Mangaluru-Bengaluru national highway between Padil and B.C. Road, including Adyar, has threatened the habitat of the frog. The Alytes , an international journal specialised on amphibians published by Paris Musuem in France reported the finding of the frog by them in 2009.
Researcher Joshy said, though the existence of the frog was noticed in 2006, it took three years to establish through research that it was a new species of the frog of the Western Ghats. That the frog was a new species was established through taxonomical (morphological study or study of external features), molecular (DNA study) and acoustic (crocking sound of frog) studies.
Euphlyctes aloysii was a tiny water frog with a mixture of dark brown and green colour. It has a thin mid-dorsal white stripe, small black spots distributed randomly from beneath the eye to the fore limb base. At night, the dorsal side becomes darker and greener in colour and the dorsal marking becomes slowly inconspicuous. Joshi said that due to land filling at Adyar there would be two possibilities. Either they would migrate or their population would decline.
He said frogs played a pivotal role in controlling mosquitoes and pests. Threat to their habitat is a cause for serious concern.