Scientists from Instituto Peruano de Herpetologia and Florida International University have discovered a new species of tree frog: Scinax pyroinguinis. The specific epithet pyroinguinis means "groins of fire" and refers to the bright orange blotched groins of the new species which reminds them of the flames of the wildfires threatening its habitat. Scinax pyroinguinis has a large head, rounded from dorsal view, large conical tubercles on upper eyelids and heels, and bright orange blotches on groins, thighs and shanks. It is genetically and morphologically distinct from other members of Scinax. With this discovery , there are now 130 recognized species of Scinax tree frogs.
The new species is currently only known from the type locality, which is a remnant patch of forest surrounded by burnt areas and pastures in the Ucayali River Basin, central Peru. The authors highlighted the importance to protect this forest, not only because of the wildfires surrounding it, but also to prevent the loss of more forest by illegal logging and other activities that cause large-scale deforestation in the Amazon. The discovery of Scinax pyroinguinis highlights the need to continue studying the diversity in the Amazon, even in those places that seem to be lost, because according to the authors, “nobody is even close to knowing the number of species living in this place”. The research was conducted by a Peruvian team of scientists and was published in the journal Evolutionary Systematics.
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