Washington, March 12 : Scientists have rediscovered the Carrikeri Harlequin Frog, which had been missing for 14 years, in a remote mountainous region in Colombia.
This frog, which is critically endangered, was rediscovered by the Project Atelopus team in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta Mountains in Colombia's Magdalena province.
The frog lives in the p¡ramo habitat at an attitude of 4,000 meters and is approximately five centimeters in size. This population is unique since it possesses orange markings, which are unusual for this species.
P¡ramo is a neotropical grassland ecosystem located in high elevations between the upper forest line (about 3,100 meters in altitude) and the permanent snow line (about 5,000 meters).
Though Colombia is one of the world's richest countries in amphibian diversity with more than 583 species, in the past several years, there has been a decline in amphibian populations especially in higher elevations in Colombia.
"By discovering that the endangered frog still exists, we hope it will show how important conservation is," said Luis Alberto Rueda, scientist for the Project Atelopus team who led the expedition.
"And we plan to continue with our research so that we can better assist in helping to ensure that this frog will not become extinct," he added.