Prelims level : Environment Mains level : GS-III Technology, Environment, Economic Development
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Why in News:

  • A team of scientists from Delhi University and the Wildlife Institute of India, in collaboration with researchers from Indonesia and the US, have discovered a new species of ‘paddy frog’ from Northeast India, primarily Assam.

More in News:

  • The frog belongs to the microhylid genus Micryletta, a “group of narrow-mouthed frogs that is primarily and widely distributed in Southeast Asia, more commonly known as paddy frogs”.
  • The new species has been named ‘aishani’, derived from the Sanskrit word ‘aishani’ or aisani meaning Northeast.
  • The new species is likely to be more widely distributed in Northeast India, particularly the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot region that lies south of River Brahmaputra.
  • Micryletta aishani is currently endemic to Northeast India but it could very well be present in neighbouring regions of Bangladesh and Myanmar Scientists said the new species strikingly differs from other narrow-mouthed paddy frogs by characteristics such as Reddish-brown colouration on back,
  • Prominent dark streaks and ash-grey mottling on the lateral sides,
  • Shape of the snout, and
  • Absence of web on its feet.
  • The newly discovered Micryletta frog from Northeast India was confirmed as a new species by detailed comparison of both DNA and morphology with all previously known members across South East and East Asia
  • DNA analyses suggested that other “undescribed species in this genus” could be in existence in regions such as Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  • The first known species of this genus was originally described from Sumatra in Indonesia. As of now, there are only four recognised species in this group, and Micryletta aishani becomes the fifth.
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