Karunathna's Shrub Frog; Karunarathnage panduru madiya
Species Description: Wickramasinghe LJM, Vidanapathirana DR, Rajeev MDG, Ariyarathne SC, Chanaka AWA, Priyantha LLD, Bandara IN, Wickramasinghe N. 2013 Eight new species of Pseudophilautus (Amphibia: Anura: Rhacophoridae) from Sripada World Heritage Site (Peak Wilderness), a local amphibian hotspot in Sri Lanka. J Threatened Taxa 5:3789-3920.
Pseudophilautus karunarathnai is a small frog with snout vent length (SVL) of 16.2 – 16.3 mm in males and 19.2 mm in females. The dorsal head and interorbital space are convex in shape. The lateral snout and canthus rostralis region are round. The loreal region and internarial space are concave. The lingual papilla and calcar are absent, while the vomerine teeth and nuptial pads are present. The smooth snout has a blunt tubercle. The interorbital region is faintly tubercular. The dorsal aspect of the thigh and anterior of the dorsum are smooth. The posterior view of the dorsum has spines. The lower flank, chest, and throat are granular, with the upper flank being slightly granular. The palm and foot lack supernumerary tubercles (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).
In life, the dorsum is cream colored with dark brown blotches. The eyes have a dark brown cross band between them, with the snout having a similar, yet indistinct cross band. The sacral hump has a broad dark brown band. Laterally, the head is dark brown with indistinct light brown spots. Inferiorly to the supratympanic fold is a dark brown band. The limbs are cream-colored. The forelimbs, hindlimbs, fingers and toes posses dark brown cross bands. The ventral side of the species is an off-white color with the hands having blotching all around. The belly and hands are a lighter white color. The feet and webbing are dark brown (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).
In preservative, the color pattern is similar in life, but all colors appear slightly faded. All dark brown patches present become more prominent, turning off-white in color (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).
Distribution and Habitat
Pseudophilautus karunarathnai is found in Sripada (Peak Wilderness), Ratnapura District, Sabaragamuwa Province, Sri Lanka at elevations of 750 – 1400 m (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013; Batuwita et al. 2019).
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
This species is found on the forest floor to about 1.5 m high in shrubs in lowland rain forests and lower montane rain forests. Besides, forests, they are observed occupying home gardens without much canopy cover (Wickramasinghe et al., 2013).
All frogs of this genus, Pseudophilautus are terrestrial direct developers (Bahir et al. 2005).
Possible reasons for amphibian decline
General habitat alteration and loss
Pseudophilautus karunarathnai is named after the retired Assistant Director at the Department of Wildlife Conservation in Sri Lanka, Y.G.P. Karunarathna. This species was named to honor his contributions and appreciation for wildlife management that which resulted in the minimization of human-wildlife conflicts in Sri Lanka (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).
As of now, no molecular phylogenetic analysis has been done on Pseudophilautus karunarathnai to determine its relation to other species in the same genus (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).
Bahir, M. M., Meegaskumbura, M., Manamendra-Arachchi, K., Schneider, C. J., and Pethiyagoda, R. (2005). ''Reproduction and terrestrial direct development in Sri Lankan shrub frogs (Ranidae: Rhacophorinae: Philautus).'' The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, 12, 339-350. [link]
Batuwita S, Udugampala S, DeSilva M, Diao J and Edirisinghe U. (2019). "A review of amphibian fauna of Sri Lanka: distribution, recent taxonomic changes and conservation." Journal of Animal Diversity, 1(2), 44-82. [link]
Wickramasinghe, L.J.M., D.R. Vidanapathirana, M.D.G. Rajeev, S.C. Ariyarathne, A.W.A. Chanaka, L.L.D. Priyantha, I.N. Bandara & N. Wickramasinghe (2013). Eight new species of Pseudophilautus (Amphibia, Anura, Rhacophoridae) from Sripada World Heritage Site (Peak Wilderness), a local amphibian hotspot in Sri Lanka. Journal of Threatened Taxa 5(4): 3789–3920
Originally submitted by: Dayupathi Eranda Nipunika Mandawala (2021-09-26)
Edited by: Michelle S. Koo (2021-10-12)
Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2021 Pseudophilautus karunarathnai: Karunathna's Shrub Frog; Karunarathnage panduru madiya <https://amphibiaweb.org/species/7988> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Dec 8, 2021.
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2021. <https://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 8 Dec 2021.
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