Picture of a new species of marsupial frog found during a research study developed in the moorland and humid forest of the Cordillera de Colan.-AFP

A new species of marsupial frog has been discovered in Peru's Amazon jungle, the state service for natural protected areas said on Monday. The new species belongs to the Gastrotheca genus of tailless frogs found in South and Central America. "The Cordillera de Colan National Sanctuary made an important discovery for science: a new species of marsupial frog registered for the first time in this protected area in the Amazon region," said the SERNANP service.

The discovery was made a few weeks ago during a study in the humid tundra and mountainous woodland area of the Cordilleras de Colan, an Amazon region in the north of Peru close to the Ecuador border that sits at 3,100 meters altitude. "This new species is distinguished by having a thick granular skin on the back, a green dorsal coloration without a pattern, turquoise iris and a belly without spots, specks or dots," said SERNANP.

The Cordillera de Colan National Sanctuary spans more than 39,000 hectares and includes six areas of threatened wildlife. Peruvian authorities say the area is of great biological importance as several unique species live there. It has thus been classified as a priority site for conservation. - AFP