Rare tadpole-carrying frog’s new species discovered in Australia

WION Web Team
Sydney Published: Nov 07, 2021, 05:22 PM(IST)

A new species of frog discovered. Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

A new species of frog has been discovered in Gondwana rainforests world heritage area in northern New South Wales. It is one of the only two in Australia, which are known to carry its tadpoles on its body. The tiny frog measures around 16mm. It is found on one mountain in the Wollumbin national park

A new species of frog has been discovered in the Gondwana rainforests world heritage area in northern New South Wales.  

It is one of the only two in Australia, which are known to carry its tadpoles on its body.   

The tiny frog measures around 16 mm. It is found on one mountain in the Wollumbin national park.  

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Employing genetic analysis, the researchers from the University of Newcastle and the South Australian Museum identified the frog as a distinct species, from its close relative Assa darlingtoni.  

These frogs are commonly known as pouched, hip pocket or the marsupial. In these species, male frogs carry developing tadpoles in pouches located on the sides of their bodies before little frogs emerge two to three months later.  

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University of Newcastle’s Michael Mahony, one of the researchers, who discovered the frog, said, “The hip pocket frog is not only unique for its amazing breeding biology among Australian frogs, but it is also unique among frogs of the world.”   

“There are only four of the 4,000 species worldwide that have male parental care where the male carries its developing tadpoles,” added Mahony.  

The population of the tiny frog is confined to an area of about 2,000 hectares on Wollumbin mountain.  

(With inputs from agencies)   

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