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Extinct Frog Not Extinct, But “Living Fossil” Instead

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hula frog

Hula painted frog. (Credit: Sarig Gafny)

The Hula painted frog was the first amphibian to be declared officially extinct in 1996. In 2011, however, the frog reappeared in Israel. Now it turns out the species is actually an unique “living fossil,” without close relatives among other living frogs.

A recent study published in Nature Communications offers an in-depth genetic analysis of the amphibian. The results show that the Hula painted frog is not related to any living frog species, yet the sole representative of an prehistoric clade of frogs (a group with a single common ancestor) that has been considered extinct for a million years, named Latonia.

Reference:
Biton, R., Geffen, E., Vences, M., Cohen, O., Bailon, S., Rabinovich, R., Malka, Y., Oron, T., Boistel, R., Brumfeld, V., & Gafny, S. (2013). The rediscovered Hula painted frog is a living fossil Nature Communications, 4 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms2959

Source: ScienceDaily

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