Friday, May 4, 2018

[Herpetology • 2018] Guibemantis milingilingy • Stumbling Upon A New Frog Species of Guibemantis (Anura: Mantellidae) on Top of the Marojejy Massif in Northern Madagascar


Guibemantis (Pandanusicola) milingilingy

Bletz, Scherz, Rakotoarison, Lehtinen, Glaw & Vences, 2018

 DOI:  10.1643/CH-17-655 

We describe a new frog species of the genus Guibemantis, subgenus Pandanusicola, from Marojejy National Park in northeastern Madagascar. Guibemantis milingilingy, the new species, exhibits high genetic divergence from all other described species of Guibemantis based on DNA sequences of a fragment of the mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene. This new species inhabits Pandanus plants like the majority of other members of this subgenus, but is found at much higher elevations (2026 m a.s.l.). It differs from its closest relative, G. punctatus, by the lack of speckled or spotted dorsal patterns and by the presence of a distinctly dark tympanum. As a high-elevation species, it is likely to be a species sensitive to climate change, similar to other montane endemics in Madagascar.


Guibemantis milingilingy, new species, in life from the type locality, female paratype ZSM 430/2016 (ZCMV 15238). 

Guibemantis milingilingy

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Etymology.— The specific epithet is a Malagasy word meaning ‘‘being in an uncomfortable position,’’ in reference to the precariousness of capturing specimens of this species, due to the uneven and steep substrate on which their Pandanus plants grow, which caused one of the authors to fall into such a plant with great gusto. The name is used as an invariable noun in apposition to the genus name. 

Available names.— No junior synonyms are available as potentially available names for any other Pandanus-dwelling species of Guibemantis.


Molly C. Bletz, Mark D. Scherz, Andolalao Rakotoarison, Richard M. Lehtinen, Frank Glaw and Miguel Vences. 2018. Stumbling Upon A New Frog Species of Guibemantis (Anura: Mantellidae) on Top of the Marojejy Massif in Northern Madagascar. Copeia. 106(2); 255-263. DOI:  10.1643/CH-17-655

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