© Professor Heinrich Mendelssohn
Discoglossus nigriventer, Israel
Eleven of the world's 12 recognized species of disc-tongued frogs (Discoglossidae
) are found in the Mediterranean Basin.
A single adult collected in 1955 was the last confirmed sighting of this species. The Hula painted frog was recorded in only two localities on the eastern shore of Israel’s Lake Huleh. It may also have been found in adjacent parts of Syria.
In the 1950s, the Huleh marshes were drained in an attempt to both eradicate malaria and to make the land suitable for agricultural use. Of the original 6,000 hectares (14,800 acres) of marshland, only 300 hectares (740 acres) remained after drainage. While this remaining wetland (considerably far from the recorded range of the frog) was set aside as a nature reserve in 1964, this action may have been too late to save the species.
Status: last seen in 1955, listed as Extinct by IUCN Red List