- GBIF Backbone Taxonomy
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- Vijayakumar, S. P., Dinesh, K. P., Prabhu, Mrugank V., Shanker, Kartik (2014): Lineage delimitation and description of nine new species of bush frogs (Anura: Raorchestes, Rhacophoridae) from the Western Ghats Escarpment. Zootaxa 3893 (4): 451-488, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.3893.4.1
- Raorchestes echinatus
Etymology. The species is named after the spinular projections on the dorsum (Latin: echino = spiny). Natural history and distribution. All individuals were observed in grasslands on grass blades (30.8 cm, n = 5). The species was observed only in the higher elevations (1464 − 1864 m, n = 6) of Baba Budan Massif (Fig 1 & 2). Further surveys are needed to verify the presence of either conspecifics or close relatives of this lineage in the adjoining Massifs of Kudremukh and Pushpagiri.
Holotype: ZSI / WGRC / V / A / 871 (CESF 1412), an adult male (SVL 18.0 mm), collected by S. P. Vijayakumar and K. P. Dinesh in September 2011 from a grassland site (13.4228 N, 75.7695 E), Baba Budan Massif (Fig 1), Western Ghats, Peninsular India. Paratype: ZSI / WGRC / V / A / 872 (CESF 1414), an adult male (SVL 19.0), collected by collected by S. P. Vijayakumar and K. P. Dinesh in September 2011 from a grassland site (13.4228 N, 75.7695 E), Baba Budan Massif (Fig 1), Western Ghats, Peninsular India. Lineage diagnosis. This lineage belongs to the larger clade N (Fig 3), with an unresolved relationship status within this clade, but with very high levels (16 S— 7.3 %) of divergence from all other lineages. It exhibits a number of unique morphological characteristics (Fig 7) (see field diagnosis) and shows strong affinity towards grasslands and is restricted geographically to the high elevations of Baba Budan Massif in the Western Ghats. We diagnose this lineage based on the deep genetic divergence, morphology, ecology and geography. FIGURE 7. Raorchestes echinatus sp. nov. (a) profile in life; (b) eye profile in life; © dorsal profile of holotype; (d) ventral profile in life. Field diagnosis. Morphology. Raorchestes echinatus sp. nov. superficially resembles R. tuberohumerus in adult male size SVL 18.4 (18.0 – 19.0, n = 3) (vs. adult male size SVL 18.3 (17.7 – 19.0, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus), however a number of divergent characters could be discerned; larger head width, HW / SVL = 0.40 (0.38 – 0.41, n = 3) (vs. HW / SVL = 0.35 (0.33 – 0.36, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus); shorter head length, HL / SVL = 0.27 (0.24 – 0.29, n = 3) (vs. HL / SVL = 0.37 (0.36 – 0.40, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus); shorter eye length, EL / SVL = 0.104 (0.099 – 0.108, n = 3) (vs. EL / SVL = 0.127 (0.111 – 0.137, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus); shorter tibia, ShL / SVL = 0.36 (0.34 – 0.38, n = 3) (vs. ShL / SVL = 0.46 (0.41 – 0.49, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus); shorter femur length, TL / SVL = 0.409 (0.39 – 0.43, n = 3) (vs. TL / SVL = 0.50 (0.46 – 0.52, n = 6) in R. tuberohumerus); skin, on the dorsum rough with minute horny ridges, more spinular and on the dorsal surface of limbs smooth; lateral and ventral sides granular (vs. sparsely granular dorsum in R. tuberohumerus); yellowish throat finely speckled in brown (vs. flesh coloured, speckled in black in R. tuberohumerus); ventral coloration, white mottlings on a dark background, the pattern extending into femur, tibia, tarsus (vs. anterior thigh region characterized by dark colouration with distinct yellow blotches in R. tuberohumerus). Additionally the new species, Raorchestes echinatus sp. nov., can be easily distinguished morphologically from known congeners in clade N, that potentially overlap with its geographical range, by its size, horny ridges on the dorsum, ventral and throat coloration. Ecology. A species of the open habitat and all individuals were observed in the grasslands. Geography. Distribution data suggests that it is restricted to the Baba Budan Massif (see natural history and distribution for details).
- Raorchestes echinatus