Discovered recently, the “crystal frog Yaku” is undoubtedly an eccentricity of nature. Found in the Ecuadorian jungle, this beautiful amphibian surprises by its colorful greenish and its main feature: a completely transparent belly that allows you to see straight to your heart. Other crystal frogs also expose their hearts through their bodies too, normally white, but Yaku is distinguished by a pericardium (the membrane that surrounds the heart) translucent, which allows to see the flow of blood through it.
This is certainly something we can rarely see in nature. Other features that distinguish it from its congeners are its green spots on the back and head, and its unique mating song.
The reproduction of the “Yaku crystal frog” begins with a song performed by the male, from the bottom of the leaves consisting of a single tonal note. This one, after the spawning of the female, is the one who takes care of the eggs in the same place until hatching, where they then fall into the waters that flow under the plants.
Unfortunately, this new friend is already in danger of extinction. Once again, man is involved in the possible disappearance of a species. It is the oil extraction, mining action and the construction of new roads that destroy the habitat of these frogs, which need large areas of uninterrupted forests to interact with their congeners and achieve the survival of the species.
The beautiful and bright coloring of this frog warns a powerful weapon: its poison. This is not used, as in most poisonous animals, as a hunting tool. On the contrary, it is used as a defense method against possible predators that are interested in turning it into their dinner.
Its food is mainly based on ants. They can eat a large number of them per day, reaching 80% of their diet.
Its habitat is distributed between Colombia, Peru and the Ecuadorian zone of Napo, in forests of the mainland or flooded. They prefer to live among the layers of tree leaves that fall to the ground. The male is territorial and aggressive with other frogs that are lurking around the place. They can often be heard in the woods with their characteristic mating sounds. In relation to this, its scientific name “ameerega bilinguis”, coming from the Latin, was granted by its melody in two tones.
Like many “arrow frogs”, this species takes paternity very seriously. After fecundating the eggs of the female in the leaf litter where they live, the male takes care of them until the tadpoles are born, which he then carries on his back until he finds a safe aquatic environment to let them continue their growth and, finally, become a colorful adult frogs .
Despite not being considered an endangered species, the felling of trees has destroyed their habitat and due to their preference for leaf substrates, they have also been affected by the climate change that is causing so much damage across the planet.
The “giant toad” or “cane toad” is a champion of survival, fossils of this species 23 million years ago have been found! The adult size of this toad reaches 15 cm on average, but there are records of reaching even 35 cm and weighing 2.65 kg.
Al igual que muchos anfibios de esta zona, la “rana de caña” usa como método de defensa el veneno. Ésta, al igual que sus huevos y renacuajos, causan la muerte al ser ingeridos por sus depredadores.
Although at first it does not look like it, his name is due to his voracious appetite. It is nicknamed “cane toad”, because it was introduced by man in various places to protect its sugarcane crops from various pests. These toads are considered among the 100 most harmful invasive species in the world. Due to its toxicity that kills natural predators in the area where it is introduced, and its great appetite, this toad has become a pest in most of the areas in which it was taken. To this we can add the fact that he is a prolific player. The females lay a large number of eggs, which reach adulthood with an enviable survival rate for any animal. Their life expectancy in nature is up to 15 years, however, in captivity they can live up to 20 years.
We can attribute their reproductive success to the varied and accessible diet that these amphibians carry. The ability to feed on both live and dead food makes it easy for you to find food almost anywhere, also allowing you to easily adapt to new habitats. Their diet, like that of many toads, is based on small invertebrates. However, this small glutton also feeds on plants, carrion and even, they can be seen eating pet food when they burst into human homes near their habitat.