n African Zoology - A new microhylid frog of the genus from a transitional forest in northwestern Madagascar

Volume 40, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X
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We describe a new species of the genus &lt;I&gt;Cophyla&lt;/I&gt; from Berara forest, Sahamalaza Peninsula, northwestern Madagascar. This arboreal microhylid frog is morphologically similar to the single known species of the genus, <I>Cophyla phyllodactyla</I>, and to <I>Platypelis occultans&lt;/I&gt; . This suggests that the latter species may in fact also belong to the genus <I>Cophyla</I>, a hypothesis that needs testing by osteological study. The new species is diagnosed by having an intermediate body size and longer notes in advertisement calls compared to these two species, its noteduration being the longest recorded from any other cophyline species. In addition we provide evidence for a considerable genetic differentiation among these taxa, based on DNA sequences of the mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene. The new species of &lt;I&gt;Cophyla&lt;/I&gt; is so far only known from primary transitional forest in northwestern Madagascar. It might be a regional endemic that is vulnerable to habitat destruction.

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