Frog Friday! Rainforest Rocket Frog

Rainforest Rocket Frog/ Rana cohete

5414839990_62033ee506_zThe rainforest rocket frog is a small frog with a mighty leap! This species of frog occurs in humid lowlands from Costa Rica to Panama. It is a diurnal species with a wide distribution, is tolerant of varying degrees of habitat change, and has been well recorded in a number of protected areas. For these reasons, there is little concern over the continued survival of this species. However, they are still threatened, like most amphibians, by general habitat loss caused by deforestation.

Silverstoneia flotator consume a multiplicity of small arthropods. In the Punta Culebra Nature Center frog exhibit, Fabulous Frogs of Panama, the Rainforest Rocket Frog eats small fruit flies. Males are territorial and will wrestle with other males to defend their territories (Savage 2002). There is currently one male in the exhibit and five more rocket frogs will be introduced in the upcoming weeks. So there are sure to be some interesting encounters in the exhibit!

Did you know? You can distinguish a mature male Silverstoneia flotator by its swollen middle finger. Males also have a pale grey throat color, while females have white-colored throats. The female frog lays her eggs in the leaf litter of a male’s territory, and when they hatch the male transports the tadpoles to nearby streams (Savage 2002). This is just one of many diverse reproductive strategies seen in Panamanian frogs. Stay tuned for next week’s #frogfriday to continue learning about the frogs of Panama!

Post by Dara Wilson


Jumpin’ Jack Flash!

Rain forest rocket frog (Silverstoneia flotator)

Rain forest rocket frog (Silverstoneia flotator)

Cute Frog of the Week: January 17, 2011

Okay, so this little guy can’t leap very far, but it sure appears like he’s trying here! Silverstoneia flotator (formerly Colestethus flotator), known as “rocket frogs,” live in the humid lowlands of Costa Rica and Panama. Because these cuties are actually a non-poisonous member of the poison dart frog family, they lack the bright warning colors of their well-defended cousins. There’s little information out there about these rocket frogs, but the International Union for Conservation of Nature lists them as least concern because they have a wide distribution and a large population. That’s at least some good news for our froggie friends! You can listen to their interesting vocalization on the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute’s site.

Photo credit: Brian Gratwicke, Panama Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Project.

Banded horned tree frog (Hemiphractus fasciatus) ALL-NEW frog ringtones: Download the rainforest rocket frog’s call!

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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