Monday, August 19, 2013

[Herpetology • 2013] Rhacophorus borneensis | Bornean Smaller Gliding Frog • a New Gliding Frog in Rhacophorus reinwardtii group (Anura: Rhacophoridae) from Borneo

Rhacophorus borneensis
Bornean Smaller Gliding Frog
Matsui M, Shimada T & Sudin A. 2013. 
Curr. Herpetol. DOI: 10.5358/hsj.32.11

A rhacophorid frog from Borneo is divergent genetically and morphologically from Javanese R. reinwardtii, with which it was formerly confused, and is recognized as a distinct species. The frog differs from R. reinwardtii by an immaculate green dorsum and a black posterior thigh surface, which is studded with sky blue spots in the female. Because the frog is also divergent genetically and morphologically from the other congeners recently split from Rreinwardtii, we describe it as a new species, R. borneensis.

 Keywords: New species, MtDNA phylogeny, Rhacophorus reinwardtii, Borneo, Taxonomy

Rhacophorus borneensis sp. nov.
Bornean Smaller Gliding Frog

Rhacophorus reinwardtii Inger and Stuebing, 1997: 194 (part); Chan and Grismer, 2010: 43 (part).

Etymology: The specific name refers to the island of Borneo, where the new species was found.

Range: Known from the type locality, Camel Trophy of the Maliau Basin Conservation Area, Sandakan Division, State of Sabah, Malaysian Borneo; Batang Ai, State of Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo (Chan and Grismer, 2010).

Rhacophorus borneensis Matsui, Shimada & Sudin, 2013
photo: George Madani

Natural History: In Camel Trophy, an amplectant pair of the type specimens were found at night perching on a tree branch (<1 m) extending above the surface of a shallow pool (3–5 m×10 m). The air temperature before the time of finding was 24C. No tadpoles or eggs were found in the pond and calling males were absent in early March. Frogs found associated with R. borneensis included Kurixalus appendiculatus (Günther, 1858), Polypedates macrotis (Boulenger, 1891), Chiromantis sp., and M. petrigena Inger and Frogner, 1979.

Matsui M, Shimada T & Sudin A. 2013. A New Gliding Frog of the Genus Rhacophorus from Borneo. Curr. Herpetol. 32 (2): 112-124. DOI: 10.5358/hsj.32.11

Chan, K.-O. & Grismer, L. L. 2010. Reassessment of the Reinwardt’s Gliding Frog, Rhacophorus reinwardtii (Schlegel 1840) (Anura: Rhacophoridae) in Southern Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia and its re-description as a new species. Zootaxa. 2505: 40–50.