Archive pour la catégorie ‘Ecuador Wildlife’
These cockroaches found only in Ecuador produce their own light in what is thought to be an attempt to mimic highly toxic beetles and deter predators. On the left in the cockroach under visible light, and on the right under a fluorescent lightbulb. Bioluminescence is very rare in land-based animals and the genus of these cockroaches is one of only three groups of insects that produce their own light in this way (fireflies are one of the other groups).
The only known specimen of these insects was collected in 1939, and it has only recently been described. A volcano eruption at the site in 2010 means further specimens are sadly unlikely to be discovered.
Thanks to The Scientist for sending this one our way.
Image credit: Vršanský et al., Naturwissenschaften (2012)
So if frogs are one of the best indicators of the overall health of an ecosystem what does it mean when mass extinctions of frogs around the planet are occurring at a rate unseen in recorded history?
It means the world is dying.
That is not alarmist or bleeding heart tree hugging extremist thinking – its a fact. Every eco-system on earth is in a state of decline.
Frogs in Ecuadorian Amazon and Coastal Forests
Ecuador is home to over 480 species of frogs and other amphibians with hundreds more yet to be described and discovered.
About 70% of these species are endemic to Ecuador which means you will not find them anywhere else on Earth. They live in vastly different climates and landscapes from the Coastal Forests and Galapagos Islands to the Andean Paramo and Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest and consequently vary greatly in appearance.
About 95% of Ecuadors Coastal Forest has already been deforested to make way for farmland. Considering scientists recently discovered 30 new species of frogs in whats left of Ecuadors dwindling Coastal Forest makes you wonder how many amazing creatures in the area have already become extinct.
Now that the Ecuadorian Government failed to raise $100million before January 1st in its Yasuni ITT Initiative we will soon find out the fate of the frog and amphibian life in one of the Earths last pristine biodiverse hotspots – Yasuni National Park.