Last seen in 1937, the elegant tropical frog species (recently pictured near a forest stream) has been rediscovered along India’s western coast, conservationists announced Thursday.
The discovery was bittersweet, however, as only four of the hundred "lost" amphibians specifically sought during the August-through-December search for extinct species have been found.
Eleven more rediscoveries, including the elegant tropical frog, were "unexpected surprises," according to Conservation International, which co-led the 2010 project with the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Amphibian Specialist Group.
The unprecedented effort was most focused on finding ten species of high scientific and aesthetic value. (See photos: "Ten Most Wanted 'Extinct' Amphibians.")
Yet the "disappointing" survey unearthed only one of those ten—Ecuador's critically endangered Rio Pescado stubfoot toad (picture).
"Rediscoveries provide reason for hope for these species, but the flip side of the coin is that the vast majority of species that teams were looking for were not found," Robin Moore, an amphibian-conservation specialist for Conservation International, said in a statement.
The elegant tropical frog was discovered in 2010 during a separate search for lost amphibians in India, which had been inspired by the larger project. That campaign discovered five species thought extinct.
The elegant, but little-studied, frog may be threatened by a proposed hydroelectric project in India's diverse Western Ghats region, conservationists added.