Kampira Falls frog

"Rana okinavana" redirects here. That taxon was erroneously thought to refer to the Ryūkyū brown frog until recently.
Kampira Falls frog
Scientific classification
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R. okinavana
Binomial name
Rana okinavana
Boettger, 1895
Synonyms

Babina okinavana (Boettger, 1895) (but see text)
Babina psaltes (Kuramoto, 1985)
Hylarana psaltes (Kuramoto, 1985)
Nidirana psaltes (Kuramoto, 1985) (but see text)
Rana psaltes Kuramoto, 1985

The Kampira Falls frog, Yaeyama harpist frog, or harpist brown frog (Rana okinavana) is a species in the true frog family (Ranidae). Until recently known as Rana psaltes, it is found on Ishigaki and Iriomote in the Yaeyama Islands of Japan, as well as on Taiwan.[1]

It is a mid-sized, stout brown frog, with a distinctive suprabrachial gland and a fold of skin running from the shoulders to the hips. The latter features unite it with other species of Rana, which may belong into Babina or Nidirana, if these are considered valid.[1]

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, subtropical or tropical seasonally wet or flooded lowland grassland, swamps, freshwater marshes, and canals and ditches. It is threatened by habitat loss.

Taxonomy

This frog has a confusing taxonomic history which is entwined with that of the Ryūkyū brown frog. Oskar Boettger described a frog species from the Ryūkyū Islands as Rana okinavana.[2][3] He could not tell for certain where these specimens were collected, as they had reached him via an animal trader and not from the actual collector, but suspected it to be Okinawa in the central Ryūkyūs, the most accessible island of the archipelago.[1]

By 1907, it was known that what supposedly was the same medium-sized brown frog also occurred on the Yaeyama Islands in the southern Ryūkyū archipelago,[4] though subsequently, Boettger's frog could only be found there. Later still, the presence of the brown frogs of Okinawa was verified and they were studied, with scientists believing that Boettger's taxon applied to them. Eventually, the situation had changed to R. okinavana supposedly referring to the Okinawan frogs only, with the Yaeyama frogs being either ignored or believed to belong to another species altogether. This was the situation by the time World War II interrupted further research, with some even believing it did not exist at all.[1]

In the mid-20th century, the Okinawan and Yaeyama frogs were again united under R. okinavana, but once again without checking Boettger's type specimens. By the 1970s, however, the southern frogs, though superficially similar in being about the same size and color, were realized to differ significantly from those on Okinawa. Initially identified as R. adenopleura, the Yaeyama harpist frog was described as a new species, Rana psaltes, in 1985.[5][1]

In 1999, upon examination of the lectotype of Boettger's R. okinavana,[6] this animal was found to be very similar to R. psaltes, differing from the Okinawan brown frogs just as the recently described Yaeyama frogs did. Furthermore, Boettger's specimens turned out to be included in the same batch from the same collector as his specimens of Chirixalus eiffingeri. These specimens must have been collected on the Yaeyama Islands, however, as it certainly does not occur on Okinawa. Thus, the frogs formerly known as R. psaltes - which had also been found on Taiwan in the meantime - turned out to be the same species that Boettger had described, hence according to ICZN rules, it is now known as R. okinavana, while the Ryūkyū brown frog has yet to receive a scientific name. Furthermore, some slight differences exist between Boettger's types of R. okinavana and Kuramoto's types of R. psaltes which were collected on Iriomote Island. Should Boettger's specimen, e.g. by ancient DNA analysis, turn out to be from Ishigaki and be subspecifically distinct from the Iriomote population, the latter would become subspecies psaltes.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f Matsui, Masafumi (2007): Unmasking Rana okinavana Boettger, 1895 from the Ryukyus, Japan (Amphibia: Anura: Ranidae). Zool. Sci. 24: 199–204. doi:10.2108/zsj.24.199 (HTML abstract)
  2. ^ Boettger, O. (1895a): Neue Frösche und Schlangen von den Liukiu-Inseln ["New frogs and snakes from the Ryūkyū Islands"]. [In German] Bericht des Offenbacher Verein für Naturkunde 33-36: 101–117.
  3. ^ Boettger, O. (1895b): Neue Frösche und Schlangen von den Liukiu-Inseln ["New frogs and snakes from the Ryūkyū Islands"]. [In German] Zoologischer Anzeiger 18: 266–270. * Lue, Kuangyang; Chou, Wenhao; Kaneko, Yoshio & Matsui, Masafumi (2004). "Babina okinavana". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2004: e.T58685A11810824. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T58685A11810824.en. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  4. ^ Stejneger, Leonhard H. (1907): Herpetology of Japan and adjacent territory. Bulletin of the United States National Museum 58 1–577.
  5. ^ Kuramoto, M. (1985): A new frog (genus Rana) from the Yaeyama group of the Ryukyu Islands. Herpetologica 41: 150–158.
  6. ^ Specimen SMF 5830: Matsui (2007).

External links

Babina (frog)

Babina is a genus of frogs in the family Ranidae from southeastern and eastern Asia. Most of the species were originally placed in genus Rana, and Babina has been considered as a subgenus of Rana.

List of endangered amphibians

As of September 2016, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) lists 848 endangered amphibian species. 13% of all evaluated amphibian species are listed as endangered.

No subpopulations of amphibians have been evaluated by the IUCN.

For a species to be considered endangered by the IUCN it must meet certain quantitative criteria which are designed to classify taxa facing "a very high risk of exintction". An even higher risk is faced by critically endangered species, which meet the quantitative criteria for endangered species. Critically endangered amphibians are listed separately. There are 1393 amphibian species which are endangered or critically endangered.

Additionally 1567 amphibian species (24% of those evaluated) are listed as data deficient, meaning there is insufficient information for a full assessment of conservation status. As these species typically have small distributions and/or populations, they are intrinsically likely to be threatened, according to the IUCN. While the category of data deficient indicates that no assessment of extinction risk has been made for the taxa, the IUCN notes that it may be appropriate to give them "the same degree of attention as threatened taxa, at least until their status can be assessed."This is a complete list of endangered amphibian species evaluated by the IUCN.

Rana (genus)

Rana is a genus of frogs commonly known as the Holarctic true frogs, pond frogs or brown frogs. Members of this genus are found through much of Eurasia and western North America. Many other genera were formerly included here.

These true frogs are usually largish species characterized by their slim waists and wrinkled skin; many have thin ridges running along their backs, but they generally lack "warts" as in typical toads. They are excellent jumpers due to their long, slender legs. The typical webbing found on their hind feet allows for easy movement through water. Coloration is mostly greens and browns above, with darker and yellowish spots.

Ryukyu Islands

The Ryukyu Islands (琉球諸島, Ryūkyū-shotō), also known as the Nansei Islands (南西諸島, Nansei-shotō, lit. "Southwest Islands") or the Ryukyu Arc (琉球弧, Ryūkyū-ko), are a chain of Japanese islands that stretch southwest from Kyushu to Taiwan: the Ōsumi, Tokara, Amami, Okinawa, and Sakishima Islands (further divided into the Miyako and Yaeyama Islands), with Yonaguni the westernmost. The larger are mostly high islands and the smaller mostly coral. The largest is Okinawa Island.

The climate of the islands ranges from humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa) in the north to tropical rainforest climate (Köppen climate classification Af) in the south. Precipitation is very high and is affected by the rainy season and typhoons. Except the outlying Daitō Islands, the island chain has two major geologic boundaries, the Tokara Strait (between the Tokara and Amami Islands) and the Kerama Gap (between the Okinawa and Miyako Islands). The islands beyond the Tokara Strait are characterized by their coral reefs.

The Ōsumi and Tokara Islands, the northernmost of the islands, fall under the cultural sphere of the Kyushu region of Japan; the people are ethnically Japanese and speak a variation of the Kagoshima dialect of Japanese. The Amami, Okinawa, Miyako, and Yaeyama Islands have a native population collectively called the Ryukyuan people, named for the former Ryukyu Kingdom that ruled them. The varied Ryukyuan languages are traditionally spoken on these islands, and the major islands have their own distinct languages. In modern times, the Japanese language is the primary language of the islands, with the Okinawan Japanese dialect prevalently spoken. The outlying Daitō Islands were uninhabited until the Meiji period, when their development was started mainly by people from the Izu Islands south of Tokyo, with the people there speaking the Hachijō language.

Administratively, the islands are divided into Kagoshima Prefecture (specifically the islands administered by Kagoshima District, Kumage Subprefecture/District, and Ōshima Subprefecture/District) in the north and Okinawa Prefecture in the south, with the divide between the Amami and Okinawa Islands, with the Daitō Islands part of Okinawa Prefecture. The northern (Kagoshima) islands are collectively called the Satsunan Islands, while the southern part of the chain (Okinawa Prefecture) are called the Ryukyu Islands in Chinese.

Ryukyu brown frog

The Ryūkyū brown frog or Okinawa frog is an undescribed species in the true frog family (Ranidae).

It is endemic to the Ryūkyū Islands Japan, specifically Okinawa and perhaps neighboring islands.Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, subtropical or tropical moist montane forests, rivers, and freshwater marshes. It is threatened by habitat loss.

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