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Rare Blue Mutation in Frog Possibly a First for Science

The magnificent tree frog (Litoria splendida) isn’t supposed to be blue. And yet, scientists found a blue one. Can science make this make sense? Kind of. It’s rare—so much so that it’s potentially the first time scientists have ever recorded seeing one. And it could be the only one on Earth.

The Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) posted a photo of the beautiful blue-skinned mystery on social media yesterday with the caption: “The Magnificent Tree Frog is normally green with white spots across the back, but this individual, photographed by our ecologists, was uniquely coloured bright blue due to a rare genetic mutation.”

What’s more, the conservancy says: “As far as AWC scientists know, this is the first recorded instance of a blue colour mutation in the Magnificent Tree Frog.”

Here’s what a magnificent tree frog looks like with its typical green coloration:

magnificent tree frog green
Image courtesy of Australian Wildlife Conservancy

And here’s the rare blue magnificent tree frog that stunned scientists:

rare blue mutation magnificent tree frog
Image courtesy of J Barker/AWC (Australian Wildlife Conservancy)

Scientists discovered the impossible frog near a watering hole at a wildlife sanctuary in the remote Kimberley region of Western Australia.

A field ecologist said scientists first spotted the blue frog near their research center and that it was a “once-in-a-lifetime” discovery.

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