Florida Cypress Tree Project
Topic:Florida Cypress Tree
In this step of the course project you will write a well-researched organism profile (research paper) on your chosen organism. You should incorporate the Outline (Assignment 2) fleshed out into paragraphs into this profile. Recall that your research should come from scientific information from the APUS library (see the work you completed for Academic Honor Review and Library Research Primer) as well as appropriate sources on the internet.
Organism Profile SCIN 130
Species Profile of the Giant Tree Frog (Phyllomedusa bicolor)
American Public University System
**Note: This is a hypothetical example to give you an idea of how to format your profile and include the required sections. It is not necessary to follow all parts of this profile, as it is an example. Include required sections and information realizing that details will depend on your species and information found in reference sources.**
Phyllomedusa bicolor, also known as the giant tree frog, is a common amphibian found throughout the Amazon Basin Rainforest. This is the largest tree frog in the world characterized by a dark green color and white underside. It has a life cycle similar to many other frogs: egg, tadpole, mature frog. The skin of the giant tree frog has unique attributes that allow protection against sun damage, prevent dehydration and combat infection. The eyes of the tree frog have vertically slits, common in nocturnal creatures. The giant tree frog evolved with similar species over 200 million years ago. Indigenous people in Peru use skin secretions in a ritual called Kampo, to give hunters luck. Phyllomedusa bicolor is a fascinating frog common in rainforests with interesting adaptations that has cultural significance to native Peruvians.
Species Profile of the Giant Monkey Frog Phyllomedusa bicolor
One of the most common frogs found in the richly diverse Amazon Basin is Phyllomedusa bicolor, the giant monkey tree frog. This amphibian, also known as the blue and yellow frog, bicolored tree frog, giant leaf frog or the waxy-monkey tree frog, lives throughout the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest of Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia and Peru (Frost, 2009). “Phyllomedusa” refers to thetree-dwelling nature of this frog; often times it can be seenclinging to the tops of leaves (Neckel-Oliveira & Wachlevski, 2004). This organism has an intriguing life cycle, evolutionary history, and anatomy. It is also a crucial part of a unique tradition with indigenous peoples of the Amazon Basin area.
Many amphibians are at risk world-wide but luckily the giant monkey tree frog is not one of them (Frost, 2009). They can have a variety of color patterns but tend to have a dark green back (better to camouflage them into a leaf) with a whitish belly and spots all over (Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.). Their fingers are clear brown and have giant green adhesive discs that allow them to cling to leaves (Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.). Male frogs are between 91 -103 mm while the females are larger, 111 – 119 mm. (Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.). One unique factor, compared to similar species, is eye structure. Their pupils are vertically elliptical with a darkly colored iris (Gagliardo, 2009; Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.). The giant monkey tree frog has skin pigments and other secretions that allow it to survive in his habitat. These organisms are often bred in captivity because of their quick life cycle.
The giant monkey tree frog lives and reproduces in trees. The female will enter a breeding reception once a year during summer months and will release an egg mass of between ten to hundreds of eggs released on leaves over waterways or streams (Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.; Gagliardo, 2009). The male and female will roll or fold the eggs on a leaf so that the tadpoles drop into the water when the hatch, which takes about 8 – 10 days(Gagliardo, 2009). The development of the tadpoles is dependent upon the temperature, the warmer it is the faster it occurs, but in general it can take from six to ten weeks (Venancio & Melo-Sampio, 2010). After metamorphosis the males and females are ready to reproduce. The life expectancy of a mature frog is ten years; its success is due in part to some of its unique structures that have evolved to allow it to thrive in this environment (Encyclopedia of Life, n.d.).
There is some debate as to the exact lineage of the giant monkey tree frog. One well accepted classification is the following: Animalia (Kingdom), Chordata (Phyllum), Amphibia (Class), Anura (Order), Hylidae (Family), Phyllomedusa bicolor (Genus and Species) (IUCN Red List). DNA analysis has been completed on P. bicolor, and it has been found to be closely related to Pelodryadinae species (Wiens, 2010). Although frogs evolved about 200 million years ago, the earliest well documented amphibian is Ichthyostega, which dates back to over 363 million years ago. (Wells, 2010, Carroll, 1988). One fascinating adaptation of the giant monkey tree frog is called pedal luring. In pedal luring, a frog will curl one or two of the fingers of his hind leg to lure in a cricket (Bertoluci, 2002). The giant monkey tree frog has two additional unique adaptations in structure that allow for specific functions: pupil shape and skin secretions.
Structure and Function
Eye structure can vary from organism to organism, depending on factors that include the concentration of light in its environment, if it is a land or aquatic organism, or if it is a predatory or prey animal. Unlike similar frogs, the giant monkey tree frog has a unique eye structure found in species that are predators or those that are active in dim or low light: a vertically elliptical pupil (Gagliardo, 2009). The basic function of the pupil is to allow light into the back of the eye to the structures that allow for sight. For most organisms, the pupil will contract in bright light to control the amount of light into eye; in dim light the pupil will expand (Koryos 2014). Vertical eye slits have evolved independently in a variety of different organisms because this anatomy grants advantages to predators, nocturnal or crepuscular organisms (those active during low lights of dusk and dawn), and those organisms that are not very tall (Koryos, 2014). It is thought that this eye structure aids in discerning color in low light (Koryos, 2014).
A second unique structure found in the giant monkey tree frog that allows for enhanced survival in the rainforest can be found in the skin. This skin hold unique pigments that protect against dehydration, infection and sun damage by helping the organism retain water (Gagliardo, 2009). These pigments can assist the frog in blending into the background leaves to protect it from predators (Folger, 1995). The skin also secretes compounds that indigenous peoples use in rituals for luck and fertility (den Brave et al, 2014).
One interesting feature of the giant monkey tree frog is the role it plays in the indigenous ritual of Sapo, or Kambo. Kambo” is the common name for the Giant Tree Frog in Peru (den Brave et al, 2014). The native peoples of Peru use skin secretions from this frog as a lucky charm to improve hunting or as a ritual to purify the body (Erspmaer et al, 1993; den Brave et al, 2014). The process begins with a healer inducing a burn on the right shoulder (in men) or the leg (in women) and skin secretions of the giant tree frog are added to the burn (den Brave et al, 2014). The active ingredients found in these secretions are several different peptides that act to excite nervous system in the flight or fight response (den Brave et al, 2014). This includes smooth muscle contraction, dilation of blood vessels, relaxation of arterial muscles as well as an inducement of an opiate- like response (den Brave et al, 2014).
Phyllomedusa bicolor, also known also as the giant tree frog, is a common frog found throughout the Amazon Rainforest. The giant tree frog has a life cycle common to many other frogs: egg, tadpole, mature frog, and its development is dependent upon temperature. Frogs evolved over 200 million years ago; this organism has several unique adaptations that enhance survival, including secretions that allow protect against sun damage, prevent dehydration and combat infection as well as eyes with a vertical pupil. The giant monkey tree frog plays an important role in rituals of the indigenous people in Peru and is a fascinating example of the bounty of the Amazon Basin Rainforest.
Bertoluci, J. (2002). Pedal luring in the leaf frog Phyllomedusa burmeisteri (Anura, Hylidae, Phyllomedusinae). Phylomedusa 1(2), 93 – 95.
Carroll, R. (1988). Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution. New York, NY: W.H. Freeman and Company.
den Brave, P., Bruins, E. & Bronkhorst, M. (2014). Phyllomedusa bicolor skin secretion and the Kambo ritual. J Venom Anim Toxins Incl Trop Dis. 20, 40 doi: 10.1186/1678-9199-20-40
Edson de Paula Lima, J., Rodder D. & Sole, M. (2010) Diet of two sympatric Phyllomedusa (Anura: Hylidae) species from a cacao plantation in southern Bahia, Brazil. North-Western Journal of Zoology. 6(1): 13 – 24.
Phyllomedusa bicolor Giant Leaf frog. (n.d.). In Encyclopedia of Life. Retrieved from http://eol.org/pages/1048381/
Erspmaer, V., Erspamer, G., Severini, C., Potenza, R., Barra, D., Mignogna, G., & Bianchi, A. (1993). Pharmacological studies of “sapo’ from the frog Phyllomedusa bicolor skin: A drug used by the Peruvian Matses Indians in shamanic hunting practices. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8266343
Frost, D.R. (2009). Amphibian Species of the Word: An Outline Reference. Version 5.3 (12 February 2009). Retrieved from http://research.amnh.org/herpetology/amphibia/
Gagliardo, R. (2009). ABCM Specialty Taxa Husbandry Phyllomedusines (Leaf Frogs). Retrieved fromhttp://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:BW4p1DueFzwJ:www.amphibianark.org/pdf/Husbandry/Husbandry%2520of%2520Phyllomedusines.pdf+&cd=8&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
Koryos (2014). The functions of different pupil shapes. Retrieved from http://www.koryoswrites.com/nonfiction/the-functions-of-different-pupil-shapes/
Mendes Venancio, N. & Melo-Sampio P. (2010). Reproductive behavior of the Giant Leaf Frog Phyllomedusa bicolor (Anura: Hylidae) in the Western Amazon. Phyllomedusa 9(1): 63 – 67.
Neckel-Oliveira, S. & Wachlevski, M. (2004). Predation on the arboreal eggs of three species of Phyllomedusa in Central Amazonia. Journal of Herpetology 38(2): 244 – 248.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved from http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/55841/0
Wells, K. (2010). The Ecology and Behavior of Amphibians. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Wiens, J., Kuczynski, C., Hua, X., & Moen, D. (2010). An expanded phylogeny of treefrogs (Hylidae) based on nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 55, 871–882.
Profile Outline: Florida Cypress Tree
April 23, 2017
Profile Outline: Florida Cypress Tree
There are two types of Florida Cypress trees, which are pond cypress and bald cypress. The two types of trees are almost similar but the only difference is that pond cypress thrives well in isolated depressions fed by nutrient poor and areas with shallow ground water. Unlike pond cypress, bald cypress thrives well in swampy areas that are rich in nutrients.
A. Common and Scientific Names
1. Common names: pond cypress is pond cypress while bald cypress is commonly known as white-cypress, tidewater red-cypress, gulf-cypress, and red-cypress
2. Their scientific names are Taxodium ascendens(pond cypress) and Taxodium distichum (bald cypress)
B. Geographic Range
1. Native to Southeastern, United States (Brockman, 2014).
a. Mississippi Valley drainage basin
b. Seen in Gulf Cost
c. Coastal plain to the mid-Atlantic states
C. Specific Location (Country, State, City)
1. Swampy areas inFlorida
D. Specific Location Biome
1. Coastal plain to the mid-Atlantic states
E. Background and Description
1. At risk of extinction. (Brockman, 2014).
a. Unlike other cypress trees, Florida cypress trees have loose leaves in the winter.
b. Florida cypress trees grow to a height of approximately 100 to 120 feet and 3 to 6 feet in diameter (Brockman, 2014).
a. Leaves are bright green in the spring and summer months. More often, they turn orange and brown in the winter a period in which the trees shed them off(Brockman, 2014).
II. Typical Lifespan
A. Florida Cypress trees are slow-growing but are long-living trees that are likely to live for over 600 years (McCauley et al., 2013).
Taxodiumspeciesare believed to have originated from the Southern Hemisphere and widely spread to other hemispheres. History has also shown that the oldest fossils of “Cupressaceae” a category of trees in which Taxodium trees belong were at first found in North America (Farjon, 2010).
There are two types of Florida cypress trees.
A. Pond Cypress- the common name for this tress is pond cypress. It is found in areas that are poorly rich in nutrients and in areas with shallow ground water. For example, they are mostly found in coastal plains of Florida.
B. Bald Cypress trees are commonly found in swampy areas and along the rivers for example, along the Mississippi River as well as in areas with rich nutrients.
Brockman, C. F. (2014). Trees of North America: A Guide to Field Identification, Revised and Updated. Macmillan.
Farjon, A. (2010). A Handbook of the World’s Conifers (2 vols.) (Vol. 1). Brill.
McCauley, L. A., Jenkins, D. G., & Quintana-Ascencio, P. F. (2013). Reproductive failure of a long-lived wetland tree in urban lands and managed forests. Journal of Applied Ecology, 50(1), 25-33.