Getting basic knowledge about the world around us, from childhood we study the flora and fauna of our native lands. Expanding our horizons, we get acquainted with new species of animals and plants, their features, we go to zoos and other places to see a huge number of beautiful and sometimes unusual animals live. One of the representatives of the unique fauna are Koki frogs.
There are many legends about the origin of this incredibly special representative of amphibians. For example, one of them says that on the island where the local tribe lived, the Goddess lived. She was secretly in love with the son of the head of the tribe, whose name was Koki. Once she appeared to him in the form of a beautiful girl, and they immediately fell in love with each other, however, soon the young man disappeared.
According to some rumors, the son of the leader was kidnapped by a demon named Yurakan. The Goddess was heartbroken and so desperate that she decided to create tiny frogs that could make loud noises. They were a reminder of the grief that befell the girl. Since then, every day the frogs call a young man who has fallen by the name of “Ko ki”. This is the sound this amphibian makes, so the frogs of this species were given this name.
Koki, being assigned to the species of leaf frogs, belong to the genus Eleutherodactylides. Leaf frogs live in the tropics, it is there that high humidity and frequent rains prevail, they live for about 10 years. Despite the external unremarkable, these frogs have a number of distinctive features. Coca are also endemic, but they are regularly fought against among people.
Koki themselves have a brown or beige body tone. The abdomen is smooth and slightly lighter than the back. Sometimes there may be brown spots on the back. The structure of coca skin is the same as that of ordinary frogs, however, they do not need to stay in water. Due to the humid climate, frogs are constantly on land, where they lay their offspring. Also on the paws, the coca has small suckers that help the frogs move through the foliage.
One feature of leaf frogs is their size. On average, when coca grow up, they reach no more than 4 or 5 centimeters. Also noteworthy is the fact that female coca are larger and heavier than many males (3 or 4 centimeters in length). These frogs generally weigh no more than 1-2 grams. Due to their size, they are very difficult to notice in tropical foliage, and this also gives them the ability to move through the leaves of trees.
Another characteristic that often annoys the locals and makes them famous is their croaking. Frogs, despite their tiny size, are capable of making very loud sounds. They reach up to 95-100 decibels. Such a volume is comparable to the noise of the subway or the maximum included speaker with music. No wonder why the locals dislike coca so much.
As for the regions where this type of frog lives, as mentioned above, they live in tropical forests with high humidity. Frogs were originally native to the islands of Puerto Rico. It can be considered that coca is a kind of symbol of Puerto Rico. However, in the course of international shipments from country to country, coca was accidentally brought to some US states, the Virgin Islands and Hawaii.
Most of all, when frogs were introduced to other regions, the Hawaiian Islands suffered. Local residents, not accustomed to the constant noise at night, tried to massively fight freshwater settlers. From places where a large number of frogs accumulated, residents constantly moved out, this led to a complete decline in rental and property prices. Also on other islands, coca began to actively breed, and displace other representatives of the fauna of these regions.
As for the diet of coca, it is almost the same as the diet of ordinary frogs. Since their size does not allow them to eat larger animals, coquis feed on small insects and midges that live in those areas. When frogs moved to the Hawaiian Islands, they began to eat local endemic insects, thereby disrupting the natural process, taking food from other species and evicting them.
Coca reproduce quite actively. Due to the fact that they do not need to be in water, coquis do not lay their eggs in water, as ordinary frogs do. The offspring is in the bushes, on the back of the leaves or on the trees, where it is quite humid. Due to this type of reproduction, small coquis do not grow out of tadpoles, therefore they do not have tails. Little frogs are born in the same form as adults.
On the island of Puerto Rico, the frog population is constantly subjected to predation. In addition to human activities to reduce the number of annoying frogs, coca has a sufficient number of natural enemies. First of all, this is a huge number of tropical spiders. Coquis are so small that they are part of the diet of local tarantulas and large predatory insects.
In addition to spiders, tropical lizards, reptiles and birds of prey often prey on coquis. They not only feed on adults, they also eat frog eggs. However, coca enemies are only present within the island of Puerto Rico. On the Hawaiian Islands, the frog multiplies quite quickly and begins to parasitize, since local predators are not interested in eating coca.
In conclusion, it should be noted that these amphibians are certainly very unique. It is sometimes surprising what interesting representatives of the fauna nature produces. With such a small size to have such a powerful voice. Such a combination cannot fail to amaze. However, each species and population must be located in those regions where it does not violate the established food chain, otherwise one species begins to parasitize and displace others.