Pregnant creature with 545 eggs found on mountain in Angola. It’s a new species
BY ASPEN PFLUGHOEFT |
Under the cover of darkness, a group of patterned creatures gathered around a rocky pool on a mountain in Angola. It was the animal’s breeding season.
The activity, however, was interrupted by passing scientists. Researchers ventured into the Serra da Namba mountains in southern Africa on several surveys between 2016 and 2020, according to a study published Nov. 10 in the journal Vertebrate Zoology.
They set out at night during the rainy season to search for amphibians. And they succeeded. In small pools and on moist rocks, researchers found 15 toads with a distinct “hourglass-shaped” pattern, the study said. Taking a closer look, they realized they’d discovered a new species: Poyntonophrynus nambensis, or the Namba pygmy toad.
The Namba pygmy toad is considered “medium-sized,” reaching about 1.4 inches, researchers said. It has a “robust” body, noticeable warts and a “rough” texture of skin. Female toads are “larger and rougher than males.” Photos show the Namba pygmy toad. Overall, its body is brownish gray with some lighter beige spots and brighter orange patches.