Nymphargus laurae Cisneros-Heredia & McDiarmid, 2007;
N. humboldti Guayasamin, Cisneros-Heredia, McDiarmid & Hutter, 2020; N. siren (Lynch and Duellman, 1973)
in Sánchez-Carvajal, Reyes-Ortega, Cisneros-Heredia & Ortega-Andrade, 2021.
We report the rediscovery of Laura’s Glassfrog, Nymphargus laurae Cisneros-Heredia & McDiarmid, 2007, based on two specimens collected at the Colonso-Chalupas Biological Reserve, province of Napo, Ecuador. The species was described and known from a single male specimen collected in 1955 at Loreto, north-eastern Andean foothills of Ecuador. Limited information was available about the colouration, systematics, ecology, and biogeography of N. laurae. We provide new data on the external morphology, colouration, distribution and comment on its conservation status and extinction risk. We discuss the phylogenetic relationships of N. laurae, which forms a clade together with N. siren and N. humboldti. The importance of research in unexplored areas must be a national priority to document the biodiversity associated, especially in protected areas.
|Figure 4: Nymphargus laurae (INABIO15383),|
(A) dorsal view, (B) side view, (C) front view and (D) ventral view.
We provide new information about Nymphargus laurae, a species previously known from a single specimen collected decades ago. Our new specimens collected at the Colonso-Chalupas Biological Reserve increase the geographic range of the species along the north-eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian Andes. New insights into the morphology, colouration, and phylogeny of N. laurae demonstrate its distinctiveness among other ocellated glassfrogs, with which it is not closely related because it is part of a clade with N. siren and N. humboldti. Although now known from a second locality, the geographic range of N. laurae is still limited and habitat loss and fragmentation are threatening the long-term survival of populations outside of protected areas, thus we suggest that the species’ extinction risk should be categorised as Endangered at the global and national level and conservation actions are urgently encouraged. The importance of research in unexplored areas must be a national priority to document the biodiversity associated, especially for range-restricted species and in little-explored protected areas.
María José Sánchez-Carvajal, Grace C. Reyes-Ortega, Diego F. Cisneros-Heredia and H. Mauricio Ortega-Andrade. 2021. Rediscovery of Laura’s Glassfrog Nymphargus laurae (Anura: Centrolenidae) with New Data on its Morphology, Colouration, Phylogenetic Position and Conservation in Ecuador. PeerJ. 9:e12644. DOI: 10.7717/peerj.12644