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Imitator poison dart frog (Ranitomeya imitator)

Imitator poison dart frog (Ranitomeya imitator)

Cute Frog of the Week: February 28, 2011

This colorful frog appears to be posing. And he is! Male imitator poison dart frogs (Ranitomeya imitator) are arboreal and position themselves on leaves to make sure other males see them and stay out of their territory. Their bright colors signal to predators to leave them alone, since their skin is toxic. Their striking appearance is not unique, however. These frogs mimic their poison dart frog neighbors’ color patterns (hence the name “imitator”), and the only way to easily identify them is by their call (listen here from The imitator hails from Peru, striking its poses in the moist forests at the foothills of the Andes Mountains. It is active during the day, ensuring its colorful body can be seen by all.

Photo credit: Joe Milmoe, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Every week the Panama Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Project posts a new photo of a cute frog from anywhere in the world with an interesting, fun and unique story to tell. Be sure to check back every Monday for the latest addition.

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