A team of scientists from Delhi University and the Wildlife Institute of India, in collaboration with researchers from Indonesia and the US, have discovered a new species of ‘paddy frog’ from Northeast India, primarily Assam.
The frog belongs to the microhylid genus Micryletta, a “group of narrow-mouthed frogs that is primarily and widely distributed in Southeast Asia, more commonly known as paddy frogs”.
The new species has been named ‘aishani’, derived from the Sanskrit word ‘aishani’ or aisani meaning Northeast. The study by Abhijit Das (Wildlife Institute of India), Sonali Garg and SD Biju (DU), Amir Hamidy (Indonesian Institute of Sciences), and Eric N Smith (University of Texas) was published in PeerJ, a peer-reviewed journal, Tuesday.
Scientists said the new species “strikingly differs from other narrow-mouthed paddy frogs by characteristics such as reddish-brown coloration on back, prominent dark streaks and ash-grey mottling on the lateral sides, the shape of the snout, and absence of web on its feet”.
However, the study says it is also present in Tripura and Manipur. “The new species is likely to be more widely distributed in Northeast India, particularly the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot region that lies south of River Brahmaputra. Micryletta aishani is currently endemic to Northeast India but it could very well be present in neighboring regions of Bangladesh and Myanmar”.