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He Spent His Career Studying a Frog. Then He Discovered Its True Identity. | Short Film Showcase ctm magazine

Andrew Gray, Curator of Herpetology at Manchester Museum spent his career studying the Splendid leaf frog. However, when a supposed new species arrived from Central America, he made a shocking discovery. Using the original specimen of the Splendid leaf frog—first collected in 1902—as a comparison, Gray noticed several unique distinctions between the latest arrivals and those he had been studying. These were, in fact, the Splendid leaf frog and the frogs Gray had been studying were the new species.
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“It’s remarkable that such a distinctive new species has remained undetected for such a long time” he said. The finding required a designation for the mistaken amphibians. As the discoverer, Gray was given the honor and decided to name them after his granddaughter, Sylvia. Less than 150 specimens of Sylvia’s leaf frog have been recorded, and there are only 50 known specimens of the Splendid leaf frog. Filmmaker Katie Garrett highlights the importance of correctly classifying and conserving these rare creatures in this stunning short.

See more from the filmmaker @katieggarrett.

Read more in “He spent his career studying a frog. Then he discovered its true identity.”

About National Geographic:
National Geographic is the world’s premium destination for science, exploration, and adventure. Through their world-class scientists, photographers, journalists, and filmmakers, Nat Geo gets you closer to the stories that matter and past the edge of what’s possible.

He Spent His Career Studying a Frog. Then He Discovered Its True Identity. | Short Film Showcase

National Geographic



  • National Geographic on August 5, 2019

    Sylvia’s leaf frog had been mislabeled for over 90 years—until Andrew Gray figured out it was a species all its own. To learn more, you can read on here: https://on.natgeo.com/2Z1WQz4

  • kartikeya bhati on September 15, 2019

    beautiful , incredible , amazing

  • Miss O.P. on September 15, 2019

    he is a hot grandpa … congratz on the frog 🙂

  • The Azrael on September 16, 2019

    He discovered all along it was a Prince?

  • Donny Disko on September 16, 2019


  • Jay Bingham on September 16, 2019

    None of such things should be of any concern if it threatens to stop a real estate development.

  • tyler barker on September 16, 2019

    I encourage anyone that loves frogs to catch them safely and gently and to love them and appreciate them. They are super friendly and they love the warmth you give them from your hands. They might pee on you but that’s normal. I miss the frogs that used to visit my pool every night and sing, now that we’ve drained it and put it away I haven’t seen them in months :/ be safe limey

  • ernie on September 16, 2019

    and now the amazon rainforest burnt down….. sigh

  • DustyCowdog on September 16, 2019

    Finds new rare endangered species. New frog goes into jar of formaldehyde.🐸

  • Foho on September 16, 2019

    I'm disappointed…. There r no official subtitles 🙃😕 good for otherwise

  • Random Me on September 16, 2019

    I will cross breed frogs and I will the name the new breed.

  • Kokoa San on September 16, 2019

    Maybe it evolved …

  • Kill Pabs on September 17, 2019

    Watching this smacked is crazyyyyyy

  • Nath on September 17, 2019

    Awesome! They say 85% of all flora and fauna is yet to be discovered!

  • Chat Noir on September 17, 2019

    Poor frog taken from its habitat to become a dead "specimen" in a jar or tube so you can pat yourselves on the back for your discovery and "naming" it . "It really became my frog", no its not YOUR frog, its a creature that is supposed to be free in nature. You "protect it" by killing it and putting it dead in a jar with formaldehyde? Thats the opposite of protection. Nature is not your toy collection. Respect its life. You don't need to "collect" them to care for the environment, just care for the environment period. Otherwise enjoy looking at you
    r collections of dead extinct creatures while more and more die.

  • Andrew Gardener on September 17, 2019

    I love tree frogs ….reeeeee reeee ….rain on the way

  • lalilu on September 17, 2019

    This dude has become a frog himself XD

  • Sophie S on September 17, 2019

    best grandad bless him

  • Steven Marshall on September 17, 2019

    You would think with all of the modern technology we have, that we could create a digital way to catalog these beautiful creatures. I’m just saying that we can 3D print a house, but we can not figure out a better way to catalog different species of animals instead of shoving a corpse in a jar or pinning a dead butterfly to a board. I mean what do they do when they get to the larger animals, like hippos, giraffes, elephants, alligators & crocodiles and all???

  • Siodenesse L. on September 17, 2019

    sees the title

  • cichlidjedi on September 17, 2019

    Encourage captive breeding of these frogs so they have the chance to be released back into the wild.

  • Swat Kats on September 18, 2019

    For me Hasn't this been done ages ago

  • Theodore o'loughlin on September 19, 2019

    Now that's what I call good company!

  • magnumtrooper17 on September 20, 2019

    On this episode of catfish

  • the book of Eli on September 20, 2019

    As an aspiring herpetologist, this really motivates me to get through college

  • SparCrinical on September 22, 2019

    Ummmmmmmmmmm I got scared of the iPhone add I'm scared…..

  • daisuke910 on September 27, 2019

    Manchester Museum is amazing. If anyone have the opportunity to be in Manchester, they should visit it.

  • Sandra U on December 25, 2019

    ☝️crazy frog lady lover 🐸🐸🐸

  • jake jenning on January 26, 2020

    When i was younger me and my cusin were walking the woods behind his farm house in eastern ontario and we spotted a small frog that was an orangy brown kind red with a spikey fin going down its head i still to this day 12 years later have never seen something liken to it again not in textbooks or web searches of the region im convinced science hasnt discovered it yet and that maybe its still out there

  • Smitty Werbenjaggermanjansen on February 21, 2020

    This short movie is absolutely beautiful. I can see how much effort they took to give a name upon a frog. The strugle is real. The people in this video own my honour

  • Echad on March 3, 2020

    I like turtles.

  • Greninjastorm on March 29, 2020


  • Sandra Wong on May 26, 2020

    So your granddaughter will always remember that her grandfather named a frog after her

  • j t on June 16, 2020

    Reptiles are shaming our planet

  • GAIN LABS on July 6, 2020

    I for one will not be referring to the Leaf Frog as Sylvia's nice try buddy. Minor Leaf Frog will do.

  • S. McGregor on November 15, 2020

    This is so beautiful, honestly brought a tear to my eye. A tear of happiness as there are nice people out there, Andrew Gray is a true gem to nature. I admire you so much. Sylvia's leaf frog is a stunning and beautiful species. You're a true friend of nature. Love this. 💚

  • Giuseppe Badalà on December 4, 2020

    living the dream

  • Alvin Alejandro on December 20, 2020

    Now i am totally confused… does it still go by fringed leaf frog as well?

  • Prestige Loft Racing Pigeons on March 4, 2021

    don't worry, God can always make more

  • robotomato on September 12, 2021

    So fascinating!

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