Species of genus Fejervarya belong to familyDicroglossidae, inhabit in farmland, swaps and other open wet habitats. The genus Fejervarya currently contains 40 species which can be classified into two large groups: the South Asia group and the East and Southeast Asian group. In Thailand, in total of seven species were recorded.
During a field survey conducted from June to September, 2013, in the farmland of Ban Monjong and Omkoi District, north Thailand, a new species of Fejervarya was discovered by the research team of Dr. Jing Che (Kunming Institute of Zoology; Southeast Asia Biodiversity Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences). This new species was named Fejervarya chiangmaiensis sp. nov.
This new species was identified by systematic examination, including morphological, acoustical and phylogenetic analysis. It can be distinguished from other species from quite a few unique morphological characters. The adult in life has relatively small body size, carries dorsal ground color varies from dark green to dark brown, lateral sides greyish, ventral surfaces of body, head, and limbs whitish-cream. Thin orange-yellowish middorsal vertebral stripe runs from the anterior part of the interorbital space to the vent. It differs from other species also by the presence of dorsal warts and dermal ridges. Like other species, this new species also emits short and long advertisement call, but the dominant frequencies of the calls are different with those in other species.
Moreover, to determine its classification status, phylogenetic analysis was carried out based on the mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene fragment. The results indicate that this new species belongs to South Asian group and forms into a clade together with F. syhadrensis, F. granosa, and F. pierrei.
The discovery of the new species, Fejervarya chiangmaiensis sp. nov., suggests that the biodiversity of amphibians in Thailand remains underestimated; and shed lights in help researcher to figure out the fauna composition of South Asia and Southeast Asia.