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Litoria fact file

Litoria description

Also known as
Long-nosed tree frog, Pinocchio frog, spike-nosed tree frog.
Size
Snout-vent length (Litoria pronimia): 31 mm Litoria biology

Little information is available regarding Litoria pronimia and Litoria cf. pronimia. Given the discovery of only a single specimen in the Foja Mountains there is not sufficient evidence yet to declare this individual as a separate species, and it is therefore amphibians

Litoria cf. pronimia were observed with erect nose spikes when initially captured..  After capture the nose became less erect and hung more loosely pointed  downwards Erection of the fleshy nose spike in male Litoria pronimia individuals is suggested to be a visual cue during courtship which may also be accompanied by glandular secretions that are forced to the surface of the nose by muscular contractions. The purpose of glandular secretions is unclear without further investigation, however frogs are known to use such cues to locate breeding pools, and it is possible they also play a role in sex recognition A Litoria pronimia egg mass found attached to a leaf consisted of 14 pale-coloured eggs encased within a jelly-like mass Litoria range

Litoria pronimia occurs between elevations of 300 and 1,200 metres andis known only from four locations in the central mountains of Papua New Guinea. All sites are situated on the southern side of the mountains, between the Star Mountains and Haia Litoria cf. pronimia was discovered in the Foja Mountains of the Indonesian Papua province, on the island of New Guinea Litoria habitat

Litoria pronimia is often found near rainforest pools or ponds The Foja Mountains where Litoria cf. pronimia was found cover an area of intact rainforest larger than 300,000 square hectares Litoria status

Litoria pronimia is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List Litoria threats

There are no major threats known to Litoria pronimia. However, it was observed that human garden encroachment had destroyed several breeding sites in the Star Mountains at the time this species was discovered As insufficient data has led to uncertainty as to whether or not the Foja Mountains individual is a separate species, there are no known threats to Litoria cf. pronimia at present Litoria conservation

Although Litoria pronimia is known to occur within two protected areas, it is necessary to investigate the full range of this species in order to define any conservation requirements It will also be important to determine if Litoria cf. pronimia is indeed a new species or if it represents a new population of Litoria pronimia. If it is a new species further work will be required to determine  its range and population size. Find out more

Find out more about Litoria cf. pronimia:

More on the Conservation International expedition to the Foja Mountains, New Guinea:

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Authentication

Authenticated (03/04/13) by Paul Oliver Mckenzie, Postdoctoral Fellow, The University of Melbourne.

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Glossary

Cloaca
A common cavity into which the reproductive, digestive and urinary systems open in birds, reptiles, amphibians, most fish and some primitive mammals.
Dorsal
Relating to the back or top side of an animal.
Glandular
Relating to or bearing glands, organs that make and secrete substances used by the body.
Tubercle (tubercles)
A small, rounded, wart-like bump on the skin or on a bone.
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References

  1. IUCN Red List (March, 2013)
    http://www.iucnredlist.org/
  2. Menzies, J. (1993) Systematics of Litoria iris (Anura: Hylidae) and its allies in New Guinea and a note on sexual dimorphism in the groamphibians
  3. The Telegraph (2011) Pinocchio frog, ET salamander, Yoda bat and dinospider: species near extinction. The Telegraph, 13 April. Available at:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthpicturegalleries/8445897/Pinocchio-frog-ET-salamander-Yoda-bat-and-dinospider-species-near-extinction.html?image=2
  4. Conservation International (2010) Newly discovered: the Pinocchio of frogs, a gargoyle-faced gecko, and the world’s smallest wallaby. Conservation International Press Releases, 17 May. Available at:
    http://www.conservation.org/newsroom/pressreleases/Pages/New_Species_in_Foja_Mountains.aspx
  5. Peddie, C. (2010) Meet the frog with a nose that grows. AdelaideNow: The Advertiser, 18 May. Available at:
    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/meet-the-frog-with-a-nose-that-grows/story-e6frea83-1225867935578
  6. Oliver, P. (March, 2013) Pers. comm.
  7. Kluger, J. (2010) Found in New Guinea: A menagerie of new critters. Time Magazine, 18 May. Available at:
    http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1989883,00.html
  8. Richards, S., Oliver, P., Krey, K. and Tjaturadi, B. (2009) A new species of Litoria (Amphibia: Anura: Hylidae) from the foothills of the Foja Mountains, Papua Province, Indonesia. Zootaxa, 2277: 1-13.
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Image credit

Litoria cf. pronimia  
Litoria cf. pronimia

© Tim Laman / naturepl.com

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KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassAmphibia
OrderAnura
FamilyHylidae
GenusLitoria It is not yet clear whether the single specimen found in the Foja Mountains represents an entirely new species Litoria sp. nov., or a new population of the known Litoria pronimia. Further research is necessary to understand its taxonomic status As in Litoria cf. pronimia, the male Litoria pronimia has an extended fleshy spike on its snout which sets it apart from the female. Litoria pronimia is a small species that has short legs and a narrow head with large eyes. Its fingers are half webbed compared to its fully webbed toes, and on the back of its forearms, heels and around the opening of its cloaca are indistinct white projections or ‘tuberclesLitoria pronimia’s amphibians

The call of Litoria pronimia is described as a quiet creaking