Malayan flying frog

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Malayan flying frog
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Rhacophoridae
Genus: Rhacophorus
Species: R. prominanus
Binomial name
Rhacophorus prominanus
Smith, 1924

The Malayan flying frog, Rhacophorus prominanus, is a species of frog in the moss frog family (Rhacophoridae). It is found in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand.

This is a largish flying frog, with females growing to a body length of up to 7.6 cm (about 3 in), and males reaching up to 6.2 cm in body length. It is generally jade green on the back and somewhat translucent when small, and a prominent red blotch on the webbing extends between the third and fifth hind toes.

Tadpoles are greyish green and have no markings. Towards metamorphosis, they become greener. They lose their tails when they are about 30–33 mm long, and freshly emergent juveniles measure about 15 mm. The labial tooth row formula (LTRF) is 5(2-5)/3 in small tadpoles and 6(2-6)/3 in older ones.[2]

Its natural habitats are subtropical and tropical moist montane forests above 600 meters ASL,[2] where it inhabits rivers, intermittent rivers, and intermittent freshwater marshes. It is not considered threatened by the IUCN, which classify it as a Species of Least Concern.

However, the IUCN followed a recent study,[3] according to which Rhacophorus tunkui was a junior synonym of R. prominanus. This synonymy was later criticized for severe methodological flaws:

"... the justifications provided by Harvey et al. (2002) were insufficient and unconvincing, especially when type material of both R. prominanus and R. tunkui were not even examined."[2]

It appears as if R. tunkui is indeed a distinct lowland sister species of the Malayan flying frog, about two-thirds of the length of the latter, and differing in some coloration details. Its tadpoles have two or three prominent black spots on each side of the tail base. While more research seems warranted, at present these frogs are better considered two species for the time being. It is not known how the range restriction of the Malayan flying frog to montane habitat would affect its conservation status; technically both taxa would more appropriately be considered as "data deficient".[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jeet Sukumaran, Peter Paul van Dijk, Yodchaiy Chuaynkern, Djoko Iskandar, Norsham Yaakob & Leong Tzi Ming (2004). "Rhacophorus prominanus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved June 17, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d Leong Tzi Ming (2004). "Larval descriptions of some poorly known tadpoles from Peninsular Malaysia (Amphibia: Anura)" (PDF). Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 52 (2): 609–620. 
  3. ^ Michael B. Harvey, Aaron J. Pemberton & Eric N. Smith (2002). "New and poorly known parachuting frogs (Rhacophoridae: Rhacophorus) from Sumatra and Java". Herpetological Monographs 16 (1): 46–92. doi:10.1655/0733-1347(2002)016[0046:NAPKPF]2.0.CO;2. 

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