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We all know that aureus and tincs are closely related, but I was wondering if any genetic studies have been done to find out how close?
 

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Maybe Evan (Ric Sanchez) might want to comment on that since he is privy to recent molecular work done in Kyle Summer's lab. This is all very interesting to me and would shed a lot of light on the relationships of the frogs we are dealing with.
 

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It is my understanding that D. Azureus and D. Tinctorius are genetically the same species. Azureus is a Tinc morph.

There was a discussion on Frog Net about this a while back. I don't know you will be able to search it there or not.

Tim
 

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There is a new molecular study in press by Stefan Lotters (I think) which basically puts the kibosh on azureus. Which I think is unfortunate because it may have some adverse conservation ramifications if azureus is really just a morph of tinctorius. I would have rather seen it left as a separate species since it draws so much attention around the world, it seems like this attention will be lessened if it is thought of as 'just another morph'. I haven't actually seen the manuscript yet but I heard about it through the grapevine. Hopefully it will be published soon.

Evan
 

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All,

I can understand why it may be best to have both animals classified as different species, and the biggest advantage seems to be able to give the animal a different status under CITES and by organizations that track such things like the Global Amphibian Assessment. However, it seems that the strategy maybe should be backwards and instead of protecting by species that we should look at changing the rules for protecting morphs so that all the rare morphs are protected. In this case, it seems that CITES classifies both species as appendix II which means that at least that treaty doesn't help much. The global amphibian assessment does differentiate between the two listing the tinc as least concern and the azureus as vulnerable. But, if you looked at each morph individually, it is entirely possible that tincs should actually be listed as vulnerable. The central wildlife reserve in Suriname seems to overlap some of the frogs' territory, but at least for the Azureus, it seems to be outside the confines of a national park. Add to that the fact that the range of the tinc cuts across three countries and it seems even more complicated. In addition to the conservation efforts going on in Peru, does anybody know if there are similar efforts going on in the Guyanas or upper Brazil? It seems that the dutch dart froggers would be in a position to work with the government in Suriname given the country's history. I have heard it mentioned that the government in Suriname doesn't allow the export of Azureus. Does that mean that tincs can leave the country? If so, it seems that they are using a mechanism aside from CITES which would be interesting to learn more about.

Marcos
 

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From what I understand the issue is with grant money, not CITES. Researchers have grants to study D. azureus... take away the name, take away the funding.
 
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