The Alsco long-fingered frog is named after the company that funded the expedition that led to its formal discovery: American Linen Supply Company (ALSCO).
When first discovered by scientists, it was observed in high densities – 73 individuals were collected during the first known sampling effort. This small tan, black, pink and blue frog is found in streams surrounded by remnant areas of forest, where it breeds and spends much of its time hiding under large stones in shallow creeks. This species is part of the Arthroleptidae family, also known as the squeaker frogs. The squeaker frogs are closely related to the “true frogs” in the family Ranidae, and diverged from all other frog families about 75 million years ago in the late Cretraceous period, with the long-fingered frogs diverging soon after. This was 10 million years before the extinction of the dinosaurs, making them as different from their closest relatives as camels are to whales! The remaining forest habitat on Tchabal Mbabo is now confined to galleries and steep inaccessible slopes, as a result of the clearing of forest for pasture. This species is not known from any protected areas, though one has been recommended for Tchabal Mbabo.
- Order: Anura
- Family: Arthroleptidae
- Trend: decreasing
- Size: 30-34mm
This species is only known from the southern slopes of Mount Tchabal Mbabo at 1,700 -2,100 metres above sea level, on the Adamawa Plateau in western Cameroon.
Habitat and Ecology
This species lives in montane gallery forest and is associated with streams. Gallery forests are remnant areas of trees that have survived intensive deforestation as a result of their inaccessible location. This species is often found under large stones around shallow pools. Individuals have been observed calling for mates at night during the dry season and females will lay their eggs under stones in shallow pools.