Saving the world while you wait

Category: Amphibians

Encounter: Golden Frog

At the outset let me state that the frog we encountered is not to be confused with the Panamanian Golden Frog (Atelopus zeteki), which was last seen and filmed in the wild in 2007. The entire known population in the wild is now assumed extinct and the frog survives only in captivity. Our Golden Frog (Hylarana aurantiaca) is luckier, but the Sword of Damocles of the amphibian world, the fungal infection chytridiomycosis,

Meeting Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde in the rainforest

The cab driver drops us at the end of a muddy road and says he’ll wait till we return. The rains have let up a bit and a few drops that cling to leaves is the only precipitation. The path winds uphill first and then starts to descend. Can’t stop, leeches are climbing up our legs from every direction. Can’t run – you need to be sure of where you are treading. Soon the sound gives it away — a stream rushing through the rainforest. A fallen tree on the way forces us to take another path, winding down, careful not to step on leaf litter. No one knows what lies beneath the dried and decomposing leaves. Glimpses of white shine through the leaves. The sound is loud now — a low, continuous roar. We find a a rock jutting above the stream and step on it, then exclaim in unison: “Wow!”