During our scheduled Rainforest Exhibit closure last week, we were busy improving our terrariums. On the Madagascar level (2nd level) of the Rainforest, look closely for some new additions!
Madagascar Reed Frog (Heterixalus madagascariensis)
Madagascar Painted Mantella (Mantella madagascariensis)
The Painted Mantella is closely related to the Green Mantella and Golden Mantella. These species of frog exhibit Aposematic (warning) coloration. These bright colors serve to warn potential predators that the frog is distasteful due to various toxins located in the frog’s skin. If this sounds familiar to you, it’s probably because most people have heard of an identical scenario with the more well-known Dart Frogs of Central and South America.
Despite similar looks and behavior, the Dart Frogs and Mantellas are not closely related to each other, but evolved separately, occupying comparable ecological niches, continents apart. This phenomenon is called Convergent Evolution.
Come compare them for yourself as you visit the Madagascar and Costa Rica galleries in the Rainforest exhibit!