Along with our collaborators Roy Santa Cruz and Evaristo López Tejeda from the Universidad Nacional de San Agustín de Arequipa, and Rudolf von May, Courtney Whitcher and Daniel Rabosky the University of Michigan, we describe a new species of minute leaf-litter frog, Noblella losamigos.
The description appeared today in a special issue of the journal Diversity. The new species has a snout-vent length of 9.0-13.6 mm (females are larger than males) and is distributed along a wide elevational range, from 200 to nearly 1500 m asl. Among species of Noblella, it is the only species with a distribution in both lowland Amazon and montane forests of the Amazonian Andes. Specifically, the new species is known to occur at the Los Amigos Biological Station, Madre de Dios, operated by Conservacion Amazonica, and at the Cock of the Rock Biological Station, Cusco, owned and operated by Peru Verde. It has also been found at intermediate elevations.
Similarly to the other species in the genus Noblella, the new species is among the smallest anurans. Small size is a common trait of many leaf-litter frogs, as seen in other species of frogs in the same family (i.e., Bryophryne, Psychrophrynella, etc.), as well as species in other families, such as the tiny Brachycephalus of the Mata Atlantica, or the three species of Mini (Mini ature, Mini mum, and Mini scule) from Madagascar, suggesting similar selective pressure may be driving convergent evolution to small size in the leaf litter environment.
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