Hyalinobatrachium dianae Facts
- The tongue-twisting term of the Hyalinobatrachium dianae serves as the scientific name of an incredible variety of amphibian. This true marvel of Nature also goes by several, much easier to pronounce, common names, however.
- These include Diane’s bare-hearted glass frog, and in recent decades, simply Kermit, after the beloved children’s character. By either of these terms, though, it represents an incredible example of unusual evolutionary processes.
- The discovery of the remarkable creature only occurred in 2015. The team of three researchers made the announcement, and the naming, in honor of the mother of one of their party. It forms the 149th discovered variety of glass frog in the region.
- For the moment, the IUCN has no listing for the Hyalinobatrachium dianae on its Red List. This principally occurs due to a lack of information. That’s due to the fact that, to date, only 6 specimens of the species have been spotted.
- In fact, the superficial resemblance of the frog to the children’s character Kermit the Frog remains remarkable. It has also prompted some individuals to suggest giving the newly discovered creature a common name based upon that.
- Sadly, however, this Kermit probably faces severe threats to its existence as a species. Given the nature of its habitat, habitat loss poses a serious danger. Its greatest threat, nonetheless, likely consists of the effects of climate change.
Hyalinobatrachium dianae Physical Description
The astounding Hyalinobatrachium dianae earns its claim to fame for reasons other than its sheer physical size. That’s not surprising, since this natural wonder only attains an average adult length measuring roughly 1 in (2.5 cm), based on limited studies.
For the moment, at least, no noticeable degree of sexual dimorphism seems to be present in this amphibian. Individuals of both genders display the same overall pattern of colors. This consists of an overall shade of lime green, on all parts excepting the stomach.
That region, though, is where the Hyalinobatrachium truly distinguishes itself from all other known frogs. In an unparalleled development of evolution, its underside remains almost completely translucent, allowing its internal organs to be fully viewed.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Amphibia
- Order: Anura
- Family: Centrolenidae
- Genus: Hyalinobatrachium
- Species: H. dianae
Hyalinobatrachium dianae Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Not surprisingly at all, given the few specimens observed to date, the Hyalinobatrachium appears to inhabit a tiny area of the world. More precisely, its only known zone of habitation consists on one portion of the country of Costa Rica, in Central America.
Its apparent choice of habitat only further serves to make studying this incredible creature difficult. All individuals seen so far live within the dense foliage of regions of rainforest. This makes even locating them, let alone studying them, quite complicated.
Within that territory, however, the Hyalinobatrachium dianae appears over a respectable range. Altitudes at which individuals were spotted ranged from 1,300 – 2,600 ft (400 – 800 m). Some of them even appeared comparatively close to the coastline.
Sadly, though, the difficulty of even locating it, plus the scant numbers so far detected, create a severe lack of information about its life cycle. Researchers do know that, like its many relatives, this creature evolved as fully carnivorous in nature.
It seems to feed opportunistically, consuming a wide variety of small prey, mainly various insects. The ongoing habitat destruction in the general region, therefore, threatens it both directly, and through a potentially significant reduction of its food source.
Quite fortunately, though, the known territorial range of the astonishing creature currently lies completely within areas already under protection. It remains unknown, however, if this protection will continue, or will disappear, leaving it entirely vulnerable.