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Molecular analysis helps scientists discover and describe a tiny new species of narrow-mouthed frog from the genus Chiasmocleis. The news species, Chiasmocleis quilombola is named after the quilombos -- communities constituted by and used as refuges for slaves who had the brevity to escape in colonial Brazil.

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As a result of the Slide Fire, the burned areas of Oak Creek were at risk for ash-filled flooding due to monsoon rains. When ash blankets the habitat, the fish that the gartersnakes feed on aren't able to survive. The ash covers rocks and small holes making it difficult for the snake to hide while hunting. Though the snakes can survive for some time without food, they will eventually starve to death. Now a team has undertaken to save the narrow-headed gartersnake in the fire's aftermath.

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"Alaska wood frogs spend more time freezing and thawing outside than a steak does in your freezer, and the frog comes back to life in the spring in better shape than the steak," said the lead author on a recent paper demonstrating that freeze tolerance in Alaska wood frogs is more extreme than previously thought.

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Paleontologists have recreated the cranial structure of a 308-million-year-old lizard-like vertebrate that could be the earliest example of a reptile and explain the origin of all vertebrates that belong to reptiles, birds and mammals.

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