New species of burrowing frog named 'Sphaerotheca Varshaabhu' discovered in Bengaluru

NewsDrum Desk
New Update

Bengaluru, Jan 31 (PTI) Researchers from various national and international organisations have discovered a new species of burrowing frog in Bengaluru.


Named as 'Sphaerotheca Varshaabhu', this previously unknown species of frog has been thriving amidst the urban landscape of Bengaluru.

"The discovery marks a significant milestone in biodiversity research and underscores the resilience of wildlife in unexpected urban ecosystems," Chetan Nag K S, Associate Professor, Jain University said in a statement.

The newly unearthed amphibian exhibits distinctive characteristics that set it apart from known frog species, he said.


Sphaerotheca Varshaabhu, meaning a genus of frog which welcomes rain, has been attributed to its behaviour of coming out of burrows during the early showers.

"Sphaerotheca Varshaabhu has adapted to its urban surroundings in surprising ways, displaying behaviours and physical attributes that enable it to navigate the challenges posed by urbanisation. The discovery emphasises the need for continued exploration of urban ecosystems and the preservation of biodiversity in areas heavily impacted by human activities," the statement read.

The lead researcher Deepak P stumbled upon the new frog species during a routine biodiversity survey conducted within Bengaluru city’s urban environment. The team utilised advanced genetic analysis, morphological studies and bioacoustics to confirm the distinctiveness of this newly discovered amphibian.

Deepak has been quoted as saying, "This discovery challenges our preconceptions about where new species can be found. The fact that such a unique frog has been living right under our noses in the heart of Bengaluru city is truly remarkable." The new species discovery is an outcome of multi-institutional collaborations like Mount Carmel College, Bengaluru, Zoological Survey of India (ZSI), Western Regional Centre (WRC), Pune, JAIN (Deemed- to- be-University), Bengaluru, Institute of Systematics, Evolution, Biodiversity (ISYEB), National Museum of Natural History, CNRS, Sorbonne University, Paris, France, Centre for Ecological Sciences (CES), Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru; Laboratory of Animal Behaviour and Conservation, College of Biology and the Environment, Nanjing Forestry University, Jiangsu, China and Genetics Research Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Yuvaraja College, University of Mysore, Mysuru.

The findings are published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal Zootaxa, contributing valuable information to the global scientific community. PTI GMS GMS KH