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Article Released Thu-29th-March-2007 09:45 GMT
Contact: Mohamad Abdullah Institution: Universiti Sains Malaysia
 New frog species discovered in Malaysia

Rana monjerai is believed to only exist around the mountainous and cool, Gunung Jerai area and live in areas near clean rivers, far from pollution.

Universiti Sains Malaysia scientists have once again made history with their latest discovery – a previously undiscovered new frog species.

The frog species, named Rana monjerai, was discovered by biologist Prof. Madya Ibrahim Hj. Jaafar and his team during a field trip expedition in Gunung Jerai, a mountain in the state of Kedah, Malaysia.

“Rana monjerai is believed to only exist around the Gunung Jerai area and live in areas near clean rivers, far from pollution. This finding proves that Malaysia is rich in diversity with a high potential of many new species yet to be discovered.” commented Associate Professor Ibrahim.

In this current study in Gunung Jerai, 5 specimens (4 males, 1 female) were found on the mountain at a height of 720 m and were brought back to the university for more analysis before they realised it was a new species.

According to Associate Professor Ibrahim, the female was 75 mm long compared to the males which were about 43 mm long. Apart from other defining features, these frogs (male and female have a “kantung (gular pauches)” underneath their neck which differentiated them from the other frogs in the Odoranna species.

He adds that a series of follow up studies will be conducted in order to understand this new species better, including its habitat, eating and reproduction habits.

“There is still much that we do not understand about this species. Detailed studies will be conducted and we will return to the original location where they were found to further conduct these studies”

The frogs were initially discovered in 2005 but were only recognised as a new species a year later in a research project with Prof Masafumi Matsui from Kyoto University, Japan. These findings were recently published in the an international scientific journal, Zoological Science.

For pictures and more information about Rana monjerai, please contact Associate Prof. Ibrahim at the following contact details or USM's press office.

Associate Professor Ibrahim Jaafar
Office phone: 04-6532314
Mobile : 019-4567389

Press Office:
Contact: Mr Mohamad Abdullah or Mr Izam Fairus Kamaruddin
Public Relations Office
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Tel: +604 - 653 2519
Fax: +604 - 658 9666
Email: pro@notes.usm.my or izam@notes.usm.my

Journal information

Zoological Science

Keywords associated to this article: new species, frog
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