Northeast India home to legless amphibians
In the deep recesses of the forest in northeast India, three new species of legless amphibians, evolved from the caecilians, spend their lives.
This discovery, carried out in collaboration with The Natural History Museum in London, and the University of Delhi, revealed three new species of amphibians, which have now been named Chikilidae. This rare discovery, done by professor SD Buju, an amphibian research professor from the University of Delhi, and his PhD student Rachunliu Kamei, was described as the 'discovery of the year' in February 2012.
Buju, who was popularly known as Delhi's frogman, discovered this new family of tailless amphibians, which seem to have evolved from other caecilians more than 140 million years ago.
Their findings, which involved the discovery of more than 40 additional new species of amphibians, were published in the international journal ZOOTAXA.
The three new species of amphibians discovered, were named as Chikila alcocki, Chikila darlong and Chikila gaiduwani. The results from this study were based on checking several morphological traits and molecular DNA markers, which is by far, the most systematic surveys conducted on caecilians for far, and the first ever in northeast India.
ZOOTAXA, which is an International Journal of Zoological Taxonomy, describes the discovery as the 'Discovery of three new blind-legless amphibians from northeast India' and highlights that northeast India may actually be a treasure trove for more unknown species.
There may be less than 200 species of caecilians in the world, according to Biju. They came across these tailless species during a fieldwork of soil digging survey carried out between the years 2006 to 2010 in many different parts of India, particularly northeast India, including Manipur, Meghalaya, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Darjeeling, Sikkim, Nagaland, Mizoram and Tripura.
This study, which has managed to introduce two new members to the Chikilidae family, is unique and one-of-a-kind, mostly due to the fact that this family has only one member- Chikila fulleri, till date, which was a broken museum species, over 100 years old.
What's even more surprising is the fact that Rachunliu, who is also popularly known as Chun, has named one of the species as Chikila Gaiduwani after her father- Gaiduwan Gaipuizei Kammai.
Given that there are millions of different animal species today, it seems that each of us may get the chance to name a species after ourselves, or someone close to us, in the near future.
Glow-in-the Dark Cockroach And Blue Bottom Monkey Among Top 10 New Species Of 2012
The top 10 newly identified species of 2012 have now been selected from over 140 aspiring candidates, including a cockroach that glows in the dark and a monkey with blue buttocks.
Endangered Species Act Turns 40: What You Need To know
One of the stringent laws ever made to protect animals, the Endangered Species Act, has turned 40.
New Species of Thumbnail-Size Frogs Discovered In India
Indian scientists have found the smallest frogs in the world – new frog species that can sit comfortably on your fingernail or coin. Four species of the new frogs were discovered in the Western Ghats of India, where three new species had earlier been found before. The frogs were found to belong to the genus Nyctibatrachus or night frogs after five years of extensive exploration.
Michigan Wants Volunteers to Survey Toads and Frogs Again This Year
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is requesting for individual volunteers to help out with its yearly frog and toad survey. The main aim of this annual event is to help the state determine the population and growth amphibians in the state. Volunteers will only need to listen to frog calls during the breeding season and identify their species and numbers.
Frog's Tongue Mystery Explained, Super-Adhesive Power Cracked By Scientists
A frog's insect-catching prowess is finally explained, and their amazing ability lies in their spit. A frog's saliva has a unique feature which makes it hard for its prey to escape.
MORE IN ITECHPOST
Amazon Go Shopping Carts That Can Tell What You’re Buying
In Amazon's major upcoming store, they will implement Dash Carts. These smart shopping carts will know what you're buying.
NASA Astronauts To Conduct 2 More Spacewalks This Month
In an effort to finish upgrading the power system of the International Space Station (ISS), NASA astronauts Chris Cassidy and Robert Behnken will conduct a pair of spacewalks Thursday, July 16, and Tuesday, July 21.
How to Play Story of Seasons Friends in Mineral Town
It wasn't always called Story of Seasons. Before it was called such, this franchise went by another name that most people are familiar with- Harvest Moon.