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Africa Geographic team finds new location for previously ‘extinct’ frog species

The Bururi long-fingered frog (Cardioglossa cyaneospila), previously thought to have gone extinct in 1952 and then rediscovered in 2011 after one specimen was discovered in Burundi, has now been discovered in Nyungwe National Park, Rwanda – a new site for this frog. And it was a member of the Africa Geographic team that made the discovery!

bururi-long-fingered-frog-rediscovered

The Bururi long-fingered frog

This exciting discovery was made by Africa Geographic Travel director, Christian Boix, on safari with clients.

Says Boix: “It was early morning and our safari clients and I were trekking for chimpanzees in the dense highland rainforest of Nyungwe when I noticed this really beautiful frog in the dense undergrowth. At the time I did not know it was once thought to be extinct, but it reminded me of poison dart frogs I have seen in South America, and I was curious as to its identity. That evening I emailed the picture to the Africa Geographic team in Cape Town and asked them to confirm its identity. I am elated to hear that this is a new discovery for this area, and that we have contributed to the pool of knowledge about this stunning frog.”

long-fingered-frog

Says an elated David Blackburn, Associate Curator of Herpetology at the Florida Museum of Natural History (University of Florida), and a member of the team that rediscovered the frog in Burundi in 2011: “This is only the second time that this species was found in Rwanda, the last time being in 1952. It has never been found in Nyungwe, but we expected it might occur there because of the habitats available. Following a number of initial records in the late 1940s and early 1950s, it was more than 50 years before more recent records in Uganda, Burundi, DRC, and now Rwanda.”

frog-forest

The forest habitat in which the frog was found.



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