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Mixtec frog, the new species of the Mist Forest Oaxaca

UNAM researchers discovered a new species of frog in the Mixteca Alta of Oaxaca. They called it Charadrahyla sakbah or Mixtec frog.

You missed out? “Endemic species that prove our natural richness”

Along the foggy forests

Those who found it were the biologist Víctor Jiménez Arcos along with four of his collaborators. It was night when they saw a very large frog (almost nine centimeters) on a wet rock, near a waterfall. They were in the Mixteca Alta of Oaxaca, in the misty forests.


At dawn they began studying it and noticed that in its legs it had a much more developed membrane than normal. As this characteristic is not present in any other variety of the family, they concluded that it was a different frog.

A Mixtec frog

Actually, the finding happened in January 2018, and they immediately conducted further studies to prove that it was a species unknown to science. More than a year later, the discovery was published in Zootaxa magazine. There they described its characteristics and the name explanation.

‘Charadrahyla’ comes from the Greek, which means ‘cañada’ or ‘forest’; and refers to its gender. While ‘sakbah’ is a Mixtec word that means ‘frog’. With this word they seek to recognize the Oaxacan community that (without realizing it) took care of this unknown species.

And, for the Mixtecs, caring for nature is part of their identity. They even call themselves ñuu savi, which means ‘rain town’ and thanks to them, small reserves have been opened to preserve the species.


More characteristics

According to the researchers, they discovered that it is a variety of a microendemic frog. In addition, it could have a wide distribution, but fragmented by the destruction of several points of the foggy forests. For this reason, this frog is considered a threatened species.

The studies continue. We still have to find out if this frog is found elsewhere. They also want to investigate more about the area where they found it because according to them, there could also be a new species of reptile.

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